Italian chemist who discovered nitroglycerine. Ascanio Sobrero worked as an assistant to Professor J. T. Pelouze in Paris and then became professor of chemistry in Turino, Italy.
Nitroglycerin (NG), also known as nitroglycerine, trinitroglycerin (TNG), trinitroglycerine, nitro, glyceryl trinitrate (GTN), or 1,2,3-trinitroxypropane, is a heavy, colorless, oily, explosive liquid most commonly produced by nitrating glycerol with white fuming nitric acid under conditions appropriate to the formation of the nitric acid ester. Since the 1880s, it has been used by the military as an active ingredient, and a gelatinizer for nitrocellulose, in some solid propellants, such as cordite and ballistite.
For over 130 years, nitroglycerin can treat angina pectoris and congestive heart failure that is associated with myocardial infarction. Though it was previously known that these beneficial effects are due to nitroglycerin being converted to nitric oxide, a potent vasodilator, it was not until 2002 that the enzyme for this conversion was discovered to be mitochondrial aldehyde dehydrogenase. Nitroglycerin is available in sublingual tablets, sprays, and patches. Other potential suggested uses include adjunct therapy in prostate cancer.