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Desferrioxamine B is the iron-free derivative of an iron-containing polyhydroxamic acid isolated from cultures of streptomyces pilosus. Desferal (Ciba), its water-soluble methane sulphonate, will soon be marketed in this country. Desferrioxamine B has a greater affinity for iron than transferrin, the iron-binding globulin of plasma, while its affinity for calcium, magnesium and other metals is less than that of chelating EDTA derivatives.

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