Elbetrine® has been used in France until 1989 for the treatment of angor pectoris. It was a vasodilatory drug used primarily to provide relief from anginal chest pain and to prevent new crisis. A drug of choice for the treatment of chronic heart insufficiency. The drug contained two active principles: nitroglycerin (trinitrine) on the external layer of the coated tablet and pentaerithrityl tetranitrate (PETN, nitropenthrite) in the tablet core, with lemon oil.
Nitro derivatives are largely used for the treatment of coronary insufficiency. PETN is a potent compound to induce the release nitric oxide (NO), and to reduce platelet activation. This effect contributes to the prevention of thromboembolic complications in congestive heart failure. Both nitroglycerin and PETN are prodrugs which release their nitrovasodilators upon enzymic bioactivation by aldehyde dehydrogenase (ALDH2) or cytochrome P450 enzymes. Together with other organic nitrates, PETN remains a commonly employed active ingredient used in the chronic therapy of coronary artery disease and congestive heart failure
A nice illustration of a heart chained with a steel wire, representing a congested organ, symbol of angor pectoris. The drug Elbetrine was intended to relieve the symptoms and slow disease progression.