Studies in the History of Modern Pharmacology and Drug Therapy  book cover
1st Edition

Studies in the History of Modern Pharmacology and Drug Therapy

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ISBN 9781409419761
Published January 27, 2012 by Routledge
344 Pages

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Book Description

An acknowledged expert on the history of modern pharmacology and drug therapy, John Parascandola here brings together 19 of his most important papers on these subjects. The book is divided into three topical sections. In the first group of articles, devoted to pharmacological theory, Dr. Parascandola sheds new light on our understanding of the history of such key pharmacological concepts as receptor theory, structure-activity relationships, and the role of stereochemistry in physiological action. The second section focuses on the discipline of pharmacology and offers insights into the pivotal role played by John J. Abel in the shaping of the field, the development of pharmacology in schools of pharmacy and in the Federal Government, and the national pharmacological society's membership ban on pharmacologists working in industry. The final section on drug therapy discusses various drugs from antibiotics to sulfones, and their use in the treatment of diseases such as leprosy and syphilis.

Table of Contents

Contents: Preface; Part I Pharmacological Science and Theory: Structure-activity relationships: the early mirage; Origins of receptor theory of drug action (with Ronald Jasensky); The controversy over structure-activity relationships in the early 20th century; The evolution of stereochemical concepts in pharmacology; Arthur Cushny, optical isomerism and the mechanism of drug action; Carl Voegtlin and the 'arsenic receptor' in chemotherapy; The theoretical basis of Paul Ehrlich's chemotherapy; The development of receptor theory. Part II Discipline of Pharmacology: John J. Abel and the early development of pharmacology at the John Hopkins University; Development of pharmacology in American schools of pharmacy (with John Swann); The beginnings of pharmacology in the federal government; The 'preposterous provision': the American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics' ban on industrial pharmacologists, 1908-1941. Part III Drug Therapy: The search for the active oxytocic principal of ergot: laboratory science and clinical medicine in conflict; The introduction of antibiotics into therapeutics; Miracle at Carville: the introduction of the sulfones for the treatment of leprosy; John Mahoney and the introduction of penicillin to treat syphilis; From germs to genes: trends in drug therapy, 1852-2002; Chaulmoogra oil and the treatment of leprosy; From mercury to miracle drugs: syphilis therapy over the centuries; Index.

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John Parascandola was Public Health Service Historian from 1992 till his retirement in 2004 and is now an Adjunct Professor in the Department of History at the University of Maryland College Park, USA. His work has been recognized by such honors as the Edward Kremers Award and the George Urdang Medal of the American Institute of the History of Pharmacy and the Edelstein Award for Outstanding Achievement in the History of Chemistry of the Division of the History of Chemistry of the American Chemical Society.


'In our electronic age of databases, search engines, and e-books, it is especially satisfying to read a meticulously researched and masterfully written book containing the most significant articles, in this case, of the distinguished historian of pharmacology, medicine, and science Dr. John Parascandola. This fine anthology draws upon the author’s broad and prolific body of work containing articles that span from 1971 to 2009... Overall, this is a wonderful book that is replete with stories about the pioneers who advanced pharmacology and how their research has made our lives better. This book will be of special interest to scholars, but there is much to offer the general reader, especially in the second and third sections.' Journal of the History of Medicine and Allied Sciences '... a remarkably coherent and consistent group of contributions...' Ambix