[Ip-health] AstraZeneca Loses Ruling Over Nexium-Related European Patent
Riaz K Tayob
riaz.tayob at gmail.com
Sun Jun 19 23:15:48 PDT 2011
[Nexium also treats ulcers caused by bacteria h. pylori, responsible for
most ulcers. A discovery of this bacteria and its treatment was made in
the early 80's. The medical establishment (read corporate health)
refused to acknowledge this research despite replicable results (with
the researchers even self-testing to make their case!) in part because
of the "lucrative" long term management of ulcers. It took the Nobel
prize to free up this research. And now a fight over Nexium... (old bbc
article below)... so much for evidence based health care... and it is
more like any sort of "monopoly" will do for companies even if it
includes dismissing research such as this... ]
*Nobel for stomach ulcer discovery *
*Stomach ulcers can be treated with antibiotics*
*Two Australian scientists have been awarded the Nobel prize for
medicine for their discovery that stomach ulcers can be caused by a
Robin Warren and Barry Marshall showed the bacterium Helicobacter pylori
plays a key role in the development of both stomach and intestinal ulcers.
Thanks to their work these ulcers are often no longer a long-term,
frequently disabling problem.
They can now be cured with a short-term course of drugs and antibiotics.
In 1982, when H. pylori was discovered by Dr Marshall and Dr Warren,
stress and lifestyle were considered the major causes of stomach and
H. pylori is found in the stomach of about 50% of all humans
In developing countries almost everyone is infected
Infection is typically contracted in early childhood, and the bacteria
may remain in the stomach for life
In most people there are no symptoms
However, it can trigger ulcers in 10-15% of those infected
*It is now firmly established that the bacterium causes more than 90% of
duodenal (intestinal) ulcers and up to 80% of gastric (stomach) ulcers. *
Dr Warren, a pathologist from Perth, paved the way for the breakthrough
when he discovered that small curved bacteria colonised the lower part
of the stomach in about 50% of patients from which biopsies had been taken.
He also made the crucial observation that signs of inflammation were
always present in the stomach lining close to where the bacteria were seen.
Dr Marshall became interested in the findings and together they
initiated a study of biopsies from 100 patients.
After several attempts, Dr Marshall succeeded in cultivating a hitherto
unknown bacterial species - H. pylori - from several of these biopsies.
Together they found that the organism was present in almost all patients
with gastric inflammation, duodenal ulcer or gastric ulcer.
Even though stomach ulcers could be healed by inhibiting gastric acid
production, they frequently relapsed, since bacteria and chronic
inflammation of the stomach remained.
*Dr Marshall and Dr Warren showed patients could only be properly cured
when H. pylori was eradicated from the stomach. *
*The work produced one of the most radical and important changes in the
last 50 years in the perception of a medical condition*
Lord May of Oxford
Dr Marshall proved that H. pylori caused gastic inflammation by
deliberately infecting himself with the bacterium.
The Nobel citation praises the doctors for their tenacity, and
willingness to challenge prevailing dogmas.
*"By using technologies generally available they made an irrefutable
case that the bacterium H. pylori is causing disease. *
"By culturing the bacteria they made them amenable to scientific study."
It is thought that H. pylori infection can trigger an ulcer by
stimulating increased acid production in the stomach, leading to damage
to the stomach or intestinal lining.
Lord May of Oxford, President of the Royal Society, said: "The work by
Barry Marshall and Robin Warren produced one of the most radical and
important changes in the last 50 years in the perception of a medical
"Their results led to the recognition that gastric disorders are
infectious diseases, and overturned the previous view that they were
see also: https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/wiki/Barry_Marshall
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