1832 CE
Codeine is isolated by French chemist Pierre-Jean Robiquet

Codeine, like morphine, is an alkaloid that naturally occurs in opium. It was first isolated in 1832 by French chemist Pierre-Jean Robiquet while he was trying to develop better ways to extract morphine. While codeine can be extracted directly from opium, there is far less of it than morphine in opium. Most codeine is now synthesized from morphine through a chemical process developed in the late 20th century.

Codeine is currently the most widely used opiate in the world and is one of the most commonly used drugs overall according to reports by the World Health Organization. It is used to relieve cough, treat mild to moderate pain and for anesthesia and sedation. It is not as powerful as morphine but is much safer to use. Nonetheless, it is regulated internationally under the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs.

Source: Codeine (n.d.). Encyclopædia Britannica.

Drugs: Opium (morphine, heroin, opioids)
Regions: France
Topics: Cultivation, production and trade, Medicinal use of drugs