Gadus Morrhua, Linne, and other species.
A fixed oil from the fresh livers.
Habitat. N. Atlantic Ocean.
Syn. The Cod (fish), 01. Morrh., Oleum Hepatis Morrhuae, Cod Oil; Fr. Huile de Foie de Morue, Huile de Morue; Ger. Oleum Jecoris Aselli, Lebertran, Stockfischlebertran.
Ga'dus. L. a codfish, Gr.
L. asellus, a certain kind of fish. Mor'rhu-a. L. a cod (fish), fr. morua, mortua, ult. merula.
Animal. - The common codfish is .6-1 M. (2-3°) long, with brown or yellowish spots on the back; body somewhat elongated and compressed, with soft small scales, none being on the head; fins soft, 3 on the back, 2 anal, and 1 distinct caudal; teeth irregular, pointed, in several ranks; gills large, 7-rayed.
Oleum Morrhuae, Cod Liver Oil. - It is a pale yellow, thin, oily liquid, peculiar, slightly fishy, but not rancid odor, fishy taste, soluble in ether, chloroform, carbon disulphide, ethyl acetate, slightly in alcohol, sp. gr. 0.920. Tests: 1. Dissolve 1 drop in chloroform 1 Ml. (Cc), shake with 1 drop of sulphuric acid - violet-red tint, gradually changing to reddish-brown. 2. Allow 2-3 drops of fuming nitric acid to flow alongside of 10-15 drops of oil - reddish, purplish color at zone of contact, changing to bright rose-red on stirring (dist. from seal oil, which shows no change, and other fish oils, which become blue). 3. Slightly acid to litmus paper moistened with alcohol (abs. of free fatty acids). Should be kept cool, in well-closed containers, having been well dried before filling. Dose, 3j-4 (4-15 Ml. (Cc.)).
Adulterations. - Allied fish oils (seal, shark, menhaden, haddock, skate, etc.), other fixed oils, rosin (soluble in alcohol), paraffin oil (saponifies with potassium hydroxide in alcoholic solution), free fatty acids, lard oil.
Commercial. - The codfish abounds in the waters off Newfoundland, Norway, Nova Scotia, New England, north of Boston, where several species of Gadus are used for the oil: G. calla'rias (Morrhua america'na, Dorsch), (G. carbona'rius (Coalfish), G. polla'chius (Pollack), G. merlu'cius (Hake), G. oeglef'inus (Haddock). Fishermen in small boats do most of the catching, Dec-March, and upon reaching shore clean and salt the fish, reserving livers for the oil, which may be rendered in an atmosphere of carbon dioxide to prevent oxidation, or more frequently by simply boiling livers with water or superheated steam to disintegrate tissue and allow the oil to separate to the surface, above the aqueous substratum, when it can be drawn off, strained, and run into butts in the cooling-room, where, after freezing to a solid, it is expressed through canvas bags, and then barrelled or bottled for market as shore, white, pale yellow oil, the hard, yellow residue (stearin, liver debris) being sold for soap-making. Frequently large boats •remain for weeks at sea collecting and salting the fish, for food, throwing offal overboard, and the livers into barrels to become decomposed, thus disintegrating tissue and separating the oil, which, rising to the surface, is racked off and bottled, being, darker and less sweet than the preceding, and known as straits, brownish-yellow oil. The remaining putrid debris may be heated with steam or water, giving a black oil of offensive odor and taste, and known as banks, dark brown oil. The oil-extracting is conducted on shore by individuals in a small way, or by large factories, either near the seat of capture or at remote points supplied with livers in refrigerator cars. Oil of good quality may be obtained by simply boiling livers in water to a pulp, straining through canvas, subsidence, decanting, and filtering.
Constituents. - Chiefly olein (physetolein) 70 p. c, palmitin 25 p. c, little stearin, palmitic acid 4 p. c, jecoleic acid, C19H36O2, 20 p. c, therapic acid, C17H26O2, iodine,.001-002 p. c, 3 alkaloids - trimethyl-amine, C3H9N, aselline, C25H32N4, morrhuine, C19H27N3 (diuretic, diaphoretic), cholesterol .5-1.5 p. c, traces of chlorine, bromine, phosphorus, sulphur .3 p. c, cholesterin, morrhuic acid, C9H13NO3, probably butyric and acetic acids. With alcohol (90 p. c.) oil yields 3.5-6 p. c. of extract called morrhuol, in which active virtues reside.
Preparations. - 1. Emulsum Olei Morrhuoe. Emulsion of Cod Liver Oil. (Syn., Emuls. 01. Morrh.; Fr. Emulsion de Huile de Foie de Morue; Ger. Emulsio Olei Jecoris Aselli, Lebertranemulsion.)
Manufacture: Rub acacia 12.5 Gm. with cod liver oil 50 Ml. (Cc.) in dry mortar until mixed, add at once water 25, triturate lightly and rapidly by hand, or suitable mechanical device, until complete emulsi-fication, add methyl salicylate .4, syrup 10, water q. s. 100 Ml. (Cc.); may replace methyl salicylate by any other flavoring ingredient, as oil of bitter almond, etc. Dose, 3j - 4 (4-15 Ml. (Cc.)).
Unoff. Preps.: Emulsion of Cod Liver Oil with Hypophosphites, 50 p. c, + calcium hypophosphite 1, potassium hypophosphite .5, sodium hypophosphite .5, acacia 12.5, oil of betula, or bitter almond, etc. .4, syrup 10, water q. s. 100 Ml. (Cc), dose, 3j (4-15 Ml. (Cc.)). Emulsion with Calcium Lactophosphate, 50 p. c., + calcium lacto-phosphate 5, lactic acid 1.6, +. Emulsion with Calcium Phosphate, 50 p. c, + precipitated calcium phosphate, 3.5, +. Emulsion with Malt, 30 p. c, + extract of malt 50, +. Emulsion with Wild Cherry, 50 p. c, + fldext. of wild cherry 6.5, +. Emulsion with Egg, 50 p. c, + glycerite of egg yolk, 17-5, +.
Properties. - Alterative, demulcent, emollient, nutrient. Owing to it already having been prepared by the liver, therefore partly elaborated, it is the most easily digested of the fats; increases red blood-corpuscles, body-weight, and healthy cell-formation throughout the tissues; pancreatic juice resolves it into glycerin and fatty acids, the latter unite with alkalies of the bile and intestinal juice, forming soaps, the larger portion, however, is emulsionized by alkaline secretions of the intestines. It is absorbed readily by the skin, and large doses may occasion diarrhoea.
Uses. - Wasting diseases, chronic phthisis, bronchitis, rheumatism, skin diseases, neuralgia, chorea, epilepsy, nerve tonic, convalescence from acute diseases, scrofula, white swelling, chronic arthritis (gout).
To take internally may disguise odor and taste: 1, Emulsion + oil of bitter almond (1 to 250); 2, Porter ℥ j (30 Ml. (Cc.)) + oil + plenty froth on top; 3, Orange- or lemon-peel chewed before and after taking;
4, Common salt, or a chew of salted or smoked herring before taking;
5, With soup or made into bread, jelly, etc. If oil nauseates, give before each dose potassium cyanide gr. 1/8 (.008 Gm.), or lime water 3iv (15 Ml. (Cc.)), or bismuth subnitrate gr. 15-30 (1-2 Gm.).