The 2015 EACPT Scientific Award is to be conferred on UK Scientist Professor Nicholas Bateman for work on treating paracetamol overdose. The Award which includes a prize of 2000€ will be presented to Professor Bateman at the 12th EACPT Congress in Madrid on Tuesday 30th June 2015.
Professor Bateman’s research, which was published in the international medical journal The Lancet, involved a clinical trial comparing a new regimen to treat paracetamol poisoning with the current one (which has been used for over 40 years). It is the first large-scale, properly powered and randomised controlled clinical trial conducted in paracetamol poisoning, a challenging environment for trial work.
This work shows that it is possible to do trials in a group of patients in the emergency room, and across transfer to the wards, most of whom were intending self-harm. This work also shows that other key trials may be possible in this group of patients and in others with overdose. This work also shows how critical are the skills of clinical pharmacology to the design of good clinical toxicology studies.
Paracetamol poisoning is common worldwide and the current standard treatment is complicated and associated with adverse effects related to concentration. The result of Professor Bateman’s trial shows that a shorter, simpler infusion regimen of acetylcysteine can cause a major reduction in adverse effects of this important antidote.
In combination with new biomarkers, that allow identification of at risk patients, this offers the opportunity to simplify treatment, reduce adverse events and shorten hospital stays. The UK MHRA (Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency) is establishing a working group to take the results of this work forward.
Professor David Nicholas (Nick) BATEMAN BSc, MD, FRCP, FRCP(E), FBPhS, FBTS, FAACT, FEAPCCT, is Honorary Professor in Clinical Toxicology at the University of Edinburgh. His research interests are in clinical toxicology, poisons information systems, and toxico-epidemiology. He has been awarded the Louis Roche award from the European Association of Poisons Centres and Clinical Toxicologists and the Lilly Prize of the British Pharmacology Society. He has published over 160 original research articles, many reviews, edited The Oxford Desk Reference Toxicology and contributed 35 book chapters.
Professor Bateman qualified in medicine at Guy’s Hospital Medical School, London. Trained in Clinical Pharmacology in Southampton, the Royal Postgraduate Medical School (Hammersmith Hospital) London, and Newcastle upon Tyne, UK, where he worked for 20 years. He moved to Edinburgh in 1998 as Consultant Clinical Toxicologist and Director, National Poisons Information Service Edinburgh unit (Scottish Poisons Information Bureau) (1998-2012), Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh. Professor Bateman was Chairman of the Poisons Board (UK Home Office) from 2012-2104 and was formerly member of the MHRA Sub-Committee on Pharmacovigilance; the Advisory Committee on Pesticides (HSE) and Chair Medical and Scientific Sub Committee; Veterinary Products Committee (VMD).
He is a Past-President of the European Association of Poison Centres & Clinical Toxicologists. He was Editor-in-Chief of Clinical Toxicology 2009-11 and formerly managing editor of the European Journal of Clinical Pharmacology (2002-9) and executive editor of the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology (1988-94).
Special Recognition for researcher Dr Eva-Luise Hobl from Austria
The EACPT has also awarded Special Recognition to researcher Dr Eva-Luise Hobl from Austria for her work showing that the pain-killer morphine reduces the blood-thinning effects of the anti-platelet medicine clopidogrel. It had been observed that treatment with morphine may lead to poorer outcome after heart attack. Dr Hobl’s work, published in the major US publication the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, showed that morphine reduces the absorption, blood levels and effects of the antiplatelet agent clopidogrel. This important drug-drug interaction could reduce the intended effects of clopidogrel to prevent heart attack and other serious vascular diseases. This work suggests that when morphine use is indicated after heart attack, alternative antiplatelet agents should be used.
Dr Hobl studied Pharmacy at the University of Vienna and obtained her Doctor of Applied Medical Science degree from the Medical University of Vienna. Between 2005 and 2008, she worked as a hospital pharmacist and started her studies at the Medical University of Vienna in 2007, where she is now postdoctoral research associate. Her main research interest is in drug-drug interactions of antiplatelet drugs. For this work, she has already received several awards; particularly noteworthy are the “Samuel A. Levine Young Clinical Investigator Award” from the American Heart Association and the “EPHAR Young Clinical Investigator Award 2014”.