The Elusive Magic Mullet. The Search for the Perfect Drug
- By: Andrew Coulton
I wonder, what sort of books do you like to read? Textbooks perhaps? Well, probably not. Or novels? Books to transport you into fiction land, removed from exams, hard work, and indeed, those textbooks.
As new drugs are forever being sought, John Mann has written an account of the discoveries of the past that have brought us to the pharmacological understanding of the present day. He narrates a chronology of significant breakthroughs in drug treatments, from the 16th century physician Paracelcus and his rather toxic treatments for syphilis, through the discovery of penicillin, and eventually on to discuss the contemporary strategies in cancer treatment. The stories behind the discovery of each drug are told. The tale of how Sir Alexander Fleming could quite easily have not discovered penicillin might not interest you, but the details of his research, the clinical trials, and the commercial problems he faced might.