Thalidomide, 2-(2,6-dioxopiperidin-3-yl)-1H-isoindole-1,3(2H)-dione, is a sedative, hypnotic, and multiple myeloma medication. The drug is a potent teratogen in rats, rabbits, and primates. Thalidomide was developed by German pharmaceutical company Gr├╝nenthal. It was sold from 1957 to 1961 in almost 50 countries under at least 40 names, including Distaval, Talimol, Nibrol, Sedimide, Quietoplex, Contergan, Neurosedyn, and Softenon. Thalidomide was chiefly sold and prescribed during the late 1950s and early 1960s to pregnant women, as an antiemetic to combat morning sickness and as an aid to help them sleep. Before its release, inadequate tests were performed to assess the drug's safety, with catastrophic results for the children of women who had taken thalidomide during their pregnancies.From 1956 to 1962, approximately 10,000 children were born with severe malformities, including phocomelia, because their mothers had taken thalidomide during pregnancy. In 1962, in reaction to the
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