Glass bottle of penicillin powder

Made:
1943 in London
maker:
Kemball, Bishop and Company Limited

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Penicillin, by Kembrell, Bishop & Co., in a glass container with cork stopper, 1943. label attached. A brown label
Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Penicillin, by Kembrell, Bishop & Co., in a glass container with cork stopper, 1943. label attached. A brown label that
Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Penicillin, by Kemball, Bishop & Co., in a glass container with cork stopper, 1943. Label attached.

A brown label that once accompanied this bottle of penicillin powder read “Penicillin 1943 from a batch brewed by Kemball Bishop & Co brought to Oxford by truck and extracted in the plant”.

Once penicillin’s potential was discovered, vast amounts were needed. Kemball Bishop & Co was one of the very first manufacturers of the drug. It carried out the first stage of production, manufacturing a weak impure solution which was then purified at Oxford University. This process produced some of the first penicillin to be tested for its clinical effects. The brown-yellow colour is due to impurities in the sample.

Details

Category:
Biotechnology
Object Number:
1964-458/3
Materials:
cork, cotton string, cotton tape, drug, glass, paper
type:
penicillin
taxonomy:
  • furnishing and equipment
  • container - receptacle
  • vessel
credit:
Sir William Dunn School of Pathology, Oxford

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