On March 14th of this year, the birthday of Paul Ehrlich, the great German researcher and ‘founder of chemotherapy’, returned for the 150th time. Interestingly, his later colleague Emil von Behring was born one day later in 1854. Both were coworkers in Robert Koch’s laboratory and became Nobel Prize laureates (for their work in immunology), making great contributions to antiinfectious treatments. Emil von Behring’s approach was through the use of immunological agents, while Ehrlich favored an approach of antiinfectious treatment by chemical agents. Through an ingenious concept that was a clear continuation of his early days in research with dyes, he found the first chemotherapeutic agents. From his dye work, he had concluded the following: if there are dyes that one can use to stain cells, why not develop pharmacological agents that, like stains, also attach to a structure in the living pathogen and kill them. He gave these agents the emotionally charged name ‘magic bullets’. This introductory review will initiate a series of papers on the occasion of Ehrlich’s 150th birthday and the ‘World Conference on Dosing of Antiinfectives: Dosing the Magic Bullets’, which is going to be held in Nürnberg, Germany, from September 9 to 11, 2004 (see www.ehrlich2004.org). Apart from the conference topic, this conference will also commemorate a real science giant of the last century and yet a modest human being whom, as Robert Koch put it, ‘one had to like’. This article recalls Ehrlich’s ingenious concepts, including modern syphilis treatment, one-dose treatment (‘therapia magna sterilisans’) of Helicobacter pylori infections and introduction of an arsenic compound, arsenic trioxide, as well as experiments and new exciting data on Congo red, a well-known ‘non-Ehrlich dye’.

This content is only available via PDF.
Copyright / Drug Dosage / Disclaimer
Copyright: All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be translated into other languages, reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, microcopying, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher.
Drug Dosage: The authors and the publisher have exerted every effort to ensure that drug selection and dosage set forth in this text are in accord with current recommendations and practice at the time of publication. However, in view of ongoing research, changes in government regulations, and the constant flow of information relating to drug therapy and drug reactions, the reader is urged to check the package insert for each drug for any changes in indications and dosage and for added warnings and precautions. This is particularly important when the recommended agent is a new and/or infrequently employed drug.
Disclaimer: The statements, opinions and data contained in this publication are solely those of the individual authors and contributors and not of the publishers and the editor(s). The appearance of advertisements or/and product references in the publication is not a warranty, endorsement, or approval of the products or services advertised or of their effectiveness, quality or safety. The publisher and the editor(s) disclaim responsibility for any injury to persons or property resulting from any ideas, methods, instructions or products referred to in the content or advertisements.
You do not currently have access to this content.