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  The Viagra™ story
            Introduction
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Aerial view of Pfizer
Picture 1. An aerial view of the Pfizer research centre and factory near Sandwich.

A few years ago, if you were asked to name a well-known medicine, you may well have said Aspirin or Paracetamol. Today you are just as likely to mention Viagra™.

The Viagra phenomenon

Even though Viagra™ has only been available since 1998, it has already gained a world-wide reputation, with sales of around £1billion per year. Pfizer, the world's largest pharmaceutical company, has a certain amount of good luck to thank for this phenomenal success.

It was by chance that they discovered its ability to treat erectile dysfunction, having developed it to treat angina. In this electronic resource (e-source), we'll use the Viagra™ story to show how a medicine is designed, developed and produced.

Contents
The e-source is split into six units with a quiz at the end:
  1. Lifecycle of a medicine
  2. Concept
  3. Discovery research
  4. Research and development
  5. Trialling
  6. Erectile dysfunction
  7. Quiz
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Using this e-source
There are a number of interactive features in this e-source:

A glossary of terms: any word with a glossary entry is highlighted like that. Clicking on the word will open a new window with a definition of that word.

Quick questions: at the end of each page is a quick question to test your understanding of that page. Type in your own answer then click on the button to see how well you did.

Roll over diagrams: many of the diagrams have highlights or sequences. You can see these by rolling your cursor over part of the picture or part of the text. The text has a roll over highlight like that.