Q: What two or three drug molecules do you identify as having had the greatest impact on society? What about on the pharmaceutical industry?
Throughout history, many drugs have proven to be critical in promoting the survival of the species. Attempting to distill the vast number of seminal discoveries into a few that have had the most impact on society and the pharmaceutical industry is a daunting task. Beginning in the early 1800s, the discovery of a number of key medicines has improved our lives and extended our lifespans; each one has been so important. Determining which ones are most important depends on the factors used to judge them, such as the scale of the drug’s use and the benefit to society in terms of pure volume of patients helped.