Monday 6 January 2020

Marla Ahlgrimm | 4 Pharmacists Whose Names You Should Know

Marla Ahlgrimm

Pharmacists are some of the most important people in our medical history, says Marla Ahlgrimm. Unfortunately, many people never get to hear the names of the men and women whose contributions have helped to save countless lives in the US and abroad. Here are four whose names you should know.

Dora Akunyili

Dora Akunyili was a Nigerian politician and the Director General (from 2001 to 2008) of the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration in Nigeria. Her educational credentials include receiving a Bachelors of Pharmacy from the University of Nigeria in 1978. She won numerous awards for her work in both human rights and pharmacology, and was a staunch advocate of fighting against counterfeit drugs. According to Marla Ahlgrimm, Dora Akunyili took up this cause when her sister died after receiving counterfeit insulin injections.

Friedrich Serturner

When not abused, morphine is a powerful drug that can help relieve pain for people that need it the most. Marla Ahlgrimm explains that it was discovered by a French pharmacy assistant named Friedrich Serterner.

Hubert Humphrey

Marla Ahlgrimm
Hubert Humphrey is best known for his three-year stint as Vice President under Lyndon Johnson. But, as Marla Ahlgrimm explains, he held a license to practice pharmacy throughout his political career. Although he did not contribute to any notable research studies, he did almost beat out Robert Nixon for president in 1968. This just goes to show that anyone strong enough to complete the rigors of a pharmacy degree can do just about anything.

John Pemberton

If you’ve ever popped the cap off a Coca-Cola, you can thank pharmacist John Pemberton. According to Marla Ahlgrimm, Pemberton created the drink we now recognize by its iconic red and white logo to fight off a morphine addiction. The initial drink contained alcohol and a cocaine derivative, although these were later replaced with carbonated water and sugary syrup.


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