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Prescription for ChangeThe Looming Crisis in Drug Development$
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Michael Kinch

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9781469630625

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469630625.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM UNIVERSITY OF NORTH CAROLINA PRESS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.northcarolina.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of North Carolina Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in NCSO for personal use.date: 27 October 2021

Why Regulate Medicines?

Why Regulate Medicines?

(p.18) Chapter One Why Regulate Medicines?
Prescription for Change

Michael Kinch

University of North Carolina Press

The prehistory of the modern pharmaceutical era is recounted, with emphasis upon the products, including the emergence of snake oil remedies, tapeworm diets and dangerous yet contemporary quack medicines such as Laetrile. As the magnitude of public outrage increased at the turn of the last century, the rise of yellow journalism highlighted spectacles that revealed further abuses and propelled high profile muckrakers to target adulterated products, including an emerging product known as Coca-Cola. As scientific understanding of infection grew, so did the potential for abuse, which culminated in a life-saving and revolutionary pre-antibiotic sulfa drug. However, the adulteratoin of this new breakthrough medicine resulted in the poisoning of more than 100 children in 1938. The disaster arose when a form of the drug was targeted at young by using a sweet elixir, which gained its taste by dissolving the medicine in radiator fluid. The resulting tragedy ushered in the era of the modern Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Keywords:   FDA, Coca-Cola, Sulfa drug, Tapeworm, Laetrile

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