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Jul 10, 2018

Do you know which U.S. president had Addison’s disease? Or how rumors from WWII led to funding for research on cortisol? In this episode, take a trip down memory lane as we detail the history of steroids and the scientists whose work lead to the discovery of prednisone.

  • Intro :14
  • A query: What other disease is attributed to Thomas Addison? :40
  • Overview of the layers of the adrenal gland 1:18
  • History of the adrenal gland 2:10
  • Thomas Addison enters the scene 3:39
  • Kennedy and terminology 6:15
  • Charles Brown-Sequard helps describe function of adrenal glands 7:13
  • George Oliver and Edward Sharpey-Schafer help understand adrenal gland 8:44
  • Adrenaline is discovered 10:03
  • Steroid chemistry begins in earnest 10:14
  • Steroids discovered, but questions remain 10:25
  • WWII rumors spur research on cortin 11:15
  • Edward Calvin Kendall, Tadeus Reichstein and Philip Showalter Hench receive Nobel prize for their discoveries relating to the hormones of the adrenal cortex 12:23
  • Committee of 14 chemists assembled 14:24
  • 1948: The case of Mrs. G 15:21
  • Pharmaceutical companies race to produce cortisone 17:08
  • How we arrived at prednisone 17:43
  • The answer to the question: “What other disease was described by Thomas Addison?” 18:34

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Burns CM. Rheum Dis Clin North Am. 2016;doi: 10.1016/j.rdc.2015.08.001.

Lawrence L. Controversial ‘father’ of endocrinology: Brown-Séquard. Endocrine Today. February 2008. Accessed April 10, 2018.

Pearce JMS. J R Soc Med. 2004;97:297-300.