Acetyl ethyl tetramethyl tetralin (AETT), a component of soaps, deodorants, and cosmetics, produces hyperirritability and limb weakness in rats repeatedly exposed to the compound. Brain, spinal cord, and peripheral nerves are discolored blue, show progressive neuronal ceroid degeneration, and develop spectacular myelin bubbling. These neurotoxic properties of AETT provide the basis for industry's decision to withdraw the compound from consumer products. In addition, AETT offers the experimentalist a new probe to explore the etiology and pathogeneses of human ceroid and myelin diseases.
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