Honorary Unsubscribe

Randy Cassingham’s Honorary Unsubscribe Recognizes the Unknown, the Forgotten and the Often Obscure People who Had an Impact on Our Lives.
These are the people you will wish you had known.

Healthful antagonist

James W. Black

A physician and pharmacologist, in the late 1950s Black invented a new class of cardiac drug, the beta adrenergic receptor antagonist — better known as a “beta blocker”. Black’s first successful preparation, propranolol (marketed as Inderal, among other names), helps stabilize angina pectoris, protects the heart after an infarction (heart attack), helps stabilize blood pressure, and (as an odd side effect) helps prevent migraine headaches — which is why I take it. Propranolol is so successful and useful it’s still in common use today; newer uses include management of stage fright, and treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder. Propranolol, and other beta blockers that followed, have saved or improved millions of lives. Black, a Scotsman, was knighted in 1981, awarded the Order of Merit (the highest honor given personally by the Queen to an individual) in 2000, and, in 1988, the Nobel Prize for medicine. Black’s career didn’t end there: he was also instrumental in developing another class of drug, the H2-receptor antagonist, with Cimetidine, used to treat and prevent peptic ulcers. Sir James died March 22 at 85.

From This is True for 21 March 2010


Honorary Unsubscribe Books

HU BooksThe Early Writeups from This is True's popular Honorary Unsubscribe feature are now available for your Kindle (or Kindle software for your smartphone, tablet, or computer) as low-cost ebooks.

See details on Volume 1 (covering 1998 through 2000), Volume 2 (2001 through 2003), Volume 3 (2004 through 2006), and Volume 4 (2007 through 2009).

The honorees truly are the people you wish you had known.

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