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阿司匹林是如何被发现的 – 译学馆
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阿司匹林是如何被发现的

How aspirin was discovered - Krishna Sudhir

当伤口发炎 用柳树叶治愈
When a wound is inflamed. Draw the heat out using leaves of the wilow
四千年前 古苏美尔人有了一项惊奇的发现
4,000 years ago, the ancient Sumerians made a surprising discovery.
如果他们刮下某种特定树木的树皮
If they scraped the bark off a particular kind of tree
并吃下树皮
and ate it,
他们的痛就会消失
their pain disappeared.
他们并不知道他们所发现的这件事
Little did they know that why they’d found
注定要影响医学的未来方向
was destined to influence the future course of medicine.
苏美尔人发现的是现在被称为
What the Sumerians had discovered was a precursor to the medicine known today
阿司匹林的这种药物的前身
as aspirin.
人们发现柳树及野生植物中普遍存在
Aspirin’s active ingredient is found commonly in willow trees
阿司匹林的有效成分
and other wild plants,
这种成分也因此注入到了各文化的医疗传统中
which is how it came to infuse the medical traditions
如苏美尔
of Sumer,
古埃及
ancient Egypt,
古希腊
ancient Greece,
以及其他的文化等
and other cultures.
大约在公元前四百年 希波克拉底 现代医学之父
Around 400 BC, Hippocrates, thought of as the father of modern medicine,
第一个建议说咀嚼柳树皮能止痛
first recommended chewing willow bark for pain relief
并用柳树叶制成的茶来缓解分娩之痛
and making willow leaf tea to ease the pain of childbirth.
但我们花了两千多年才完全研究出其潜力
But it took over 2,000 years for us to comprehensively investigate its potential.
十八世纪中叶
In the mid-18th century,
一个名叫爱德华·斯通的英国人花了五年时间做实验
an Englishman named Edward Stone ran five years of experiments,
证明柳树皮压碎而成的粉末
showing that willow bark crushed into a powder and eaten
吃下去可以治发烧
could cure a fever.
又过了大概70年 一个叫约翰·毕希纳的德国药剂师
It took nearly another 70 years for a German pharmacist, Johann Buchner,
最终确认并提炼出使这一切成为可能的物质
to finally identify and purify the substance that made all this possible,
一种叫水杨苷的化合物
a compound called salicin.
之后 医生们开始习惯性地运用柳树皮
By then, doctors were routinely using willow bark
和其他富含水杨苷的植物 如草菊
and other salicin-rich plants, like the herb meadowsweet,
来缓解疼痛 发烧 炎症
to ease pain, fever, and inflammation.
但是 对这一特定的化合物的确定意外地开启了
But identifying the exact compound suddenly opened up the possibility
操纵其构造的可能性
of manipulating its form.
1853年 一位法国化学家成功用化学方式人工合成这一化合物
In 1853, a French chemist managed to chemically synthesize the compound,
发明了一种叫乙酰水杨酸的物质
creating a substance called acetylsalicylic acid.
之后在1897年 拜耳制药公司发现了一种新方法
Then in 1897, the pharmaceutical company Bayer found a new method
把乙酰水杨酸当作一种止疼用的化合物来销售 称其为阿司匹林
and began marketing the compound as a pain reliever called aspirin.
这被广泛认为是首批合成西药之一
This was widely recognized as one of the first synthetic pharmaceutical drugs.
起初 阿司匹林仅仅是拜耳公司的品牌名称
Originally, aspirin was just Bayer’s brand name:
Aspirin(阿司匹林)的首字母A代表乙酰基
A for acetyl,
spir指代草菊
and spir for meadowsweet,
草菊的植物学名称是榆绣线菊
whose botanical name is Spiraea ulmaria.
不久之后 阿司匹林变成乙酰水杨酸的同义词
Soon, aspirin became synonymous with acetylsalicylic acid.
当其影响力提升 人们发现阿司匹林不仅能缓解疼痛
As its influence grew, aspirin was found to ease not just pain,
还能治疗许多跟炎症相关的毛病
but also many inflammation-related problems,
如类风湿性关节炎
like rheumatoid arthritis,
心包炎 它会感染包裹在心脏周围充满液体的膜
pericarditis, which enflames the fluid-filled sack around the heart,
以及川崎病
and Kawasaki disease,
这种病会让血管发炎
where blood vessels become inflamed.
然而 尽管阿司匹林有药用价值
Yet, despite aspirin’s medical value,
在当时 科学家仍不知道它是怎么起作用的
at this point, scientists still didn’t actually know how it worked.
20世纪60年代和70年代 瑞典和英国科学家终于有所发现
In the 1960s and 70s, Swedish and British scientists changed that.
他们证明 阿司匹林阻止了某些被称为前列腺素的
They showed that the drug interrupts the production of certain chemicals
化学物质的生产
called prostaglandins,
这种物质抑制了痛觉和炎症的传递
which control the transmission of pain sensations and inflammation.
1982年 这一发现让研究者们获得了诺贝尔医学奖
In 1982, that discovery won the researchers a Nobel Prize in Medicine.
随着时间的流逝 研究也发现了阿司匹林的风险
Over time, research has also uncovered aspirin’s risks.
过度服用会导致肠内和脑内出血
Overconsumption can cause bleeding in the intestines and the brain.
也会引起瑞氏综合征
It can also trigger Reye’s Syndrome,
这是一种罕见且易致命的疾病
a rare but often fatal illness that affects the brain and liver
会通过传染作用于小孩的大脑和肝脏
in children with an infection.
20世纪末期
And in the late 20th century,
新的止痛药使阿司匹林的成功黯然失色
aspirin’s success had been overshadowed by newer pain killers
因新药有更小的副作用
with fewer side effects,
例如醋氨酚和布洛芬
like acetaminophen and ibuprofen.
但在80年代 对阿司匹林好处的更多发现
But in the 1980s, further discoveries about aspirin’s benefits
激活了人们对它的兴趣
revived interest in it.
事实上 1982年诺贝尔奖获得者也证明了
In fact, the 1982 Nobel Prize winners also demonstrated
阿司匹林能降低血栓素的生产速率
that aspirin slows production of thromboxanes,
这种化学物质会导致血小板的凝结
chemicals that cause clumping of platelets,
之后会导致血块的形成
which in turn form blood clots.
一项有重大意义的临床试验表明对于服用阿司匹林的人来说
A landmark clinical trial showed that aspirin reduced heart attack risk by 44%
他们心脏病发作的几率降低了44%
in participants who took the drug.
如今 医生给心脏病或中风患者开出阿司匹林药物
Today, we prescribe it to people at risk of heart attack or stroke
因为它会降低血块在动脉里形成的可能性
because it cuts the likelihood of clots forming in the arteries
而这些血块会供给心脏和大脑
that supply the heart and brain.
更有趣的是
Even more intriguingly,
有一种新兴的研究称
there’s a growing body of research that suggests
阿司匹林会降低患癌和因癌致死的风险
aspirin reduces the risk of getting and dying from cancer,
特别是肠癌
especially colorectal cancer.
这也许是由于阿司匹林有抗血小板的作用
This might be due to aspirin’s anti-platelet effects.
通过降低血小板的活性 阿司匹林也许会降低某种
By reducing platelet activity, aspirin may decrease the levels of a certain protein
帮助癌细胞扩散的蛋白含量
that helps cancer cells spread.
这些研究将仅仅是一种止痛药的阿司匹林
These discoveries have transformed aspirin from a mere pain reliever
转变成了一种潜在的救生治疗手段
to a potentially life-saving treatment.
今天 我们每年大约要消耗1000亿阿司匹林药片
Today, we consume about 100 billion aspirin tablets each year,
并且研究者们继续研究其新的作用
and researchers continue searching for new applications.
现今 多用途的阿司匹林已改变了现代医学
Already, aspirin’s versatility has transformed modern medicine,
考虑到其卑微的出身 仅仅是刮柳树皮而已
which is astounding considering its humble beginnings
这实在令人震惊
in a scraping of willow bark.

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阿司匹林在医学上作用如此之大 那么它又是怎么被发现和运用的呢 请看视频了解

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