The aspirin story – from willow to wonder drug

  title={The aspirin story – from willow to wonder drug},
  author={Michael J.R. Desborough and David M Keeling},
  journal={British Journal of Haematology},
The story of the discovery of aspirin stretches back more than 3500 years to when bark from the willow tree was used as a pain reliever and antipyretic. It involves an Oxfordshire clergyman, scientists at a German dye manufacturer, a Nobel Prize‐winning discovery and a series of pivotal clinical trials. Aspirin is now the most commonly used drug in the world. Its role in preventing cardiovascular and cerebrovascular disease has been revolutionary and one of the biggest pharmaceutical success… 

Historical perspective of aspirin: A journey from discovery to clinical practice Ancient and modern history

Besides the therapeutic impacts of ASA regarding the coronary thrombosis, angina pectoris, and vascular diseases, the extra-cardiovascular benefits of ASA administration in treatment of various cancers, inflammatory disorders, as well as COVID-19 (Coronavirus disease 2019) have been also well-established.

From NSAIDs to Glucocorticoids and Beyond

This review aims to recapitulate the last four decades of research on NSAIDs, GCs, and AnxA1 and their anti-inflammatory effects.

Aspirin for primary cardiovascular disease prevention: what we know and what we don’t know

Of the 11 trials, 6 identified a statistically significant protection against non-fatal myocardial infarctions, with a pooled analysis producing a relative risk of 0.78, the only trial that demonstrated an overall reduction in cardiovascular mortality had an exceptionally low event rate.

Clinical Applications of Aspirin as a Multi-potent Drug Beyond Cardiovascular Implications: A Proof of Concept for Anesthesiologists- A Narrative Review

It is highlighted that ASA can yield multiple extra-cardiovascular therapeutic potencies in facing neurodegenerative disorders, various cancers, inflammatory responses, and the COVID-19 pandemic.

QSAR Study of Some Natural and Synthetic Platelet Aggregation Inhibitors and their Pharmacological Profile

According to the quantitative structure–activity relationship estimates, these naturally occurring sulfur-containing hydrocarbons are more likely to exhibit antiplatelet properties than those currently used in clinical medicine.

Aspirin and Infection: A Narrative Review

A review of research on the anti-infective properties of ASA and viral, bacterial, fungal and parasitic infections, as well as ASA’s antibiofilm properties is performed to provide a comprehensive overview.

Looking at NSAIDs from a historical perspective and their current status in drug repurposing for cancer treatment and prevention

A historical perspective is presented on the evolution of NSAIDs, regarding their COX-dependent/independent mode of actions, structural and mechanism-based classifications, and adverse effects, particularly in cancers associated with the GI tract such as gastric and colorectal carcinoma.



The discovery of aspirin: a reappraisal

  • W. Sneader
  • Chemistry
    BMJ : British Medical Journal
  • 2000
Analysis of relevant archival and published material now supports Eichengrun's claim that the work had been done under his direction and throws doubt on the reliability of the source crediting Hoffmann.

From plant extract to molecular panacea: a commentary on Stone (1763) ‘An account of the success of the bark of the willow in the cure of the agues’

  • J. Wood
  • Biology
    Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
  • 2015
The route to optimizing and understanding the mechanism of action of anti-inflammatory drugs that have their origins in Stone's seminal study, ‘An account of the success of the bark of the willow in the cure of agues’ are discussed.

The Aspirin Foundation Scientific Conference: the history, the present state and the future of aspirin prophylaxis

The 2013 Aspirin Foundation Conference covered a range of topics from clinical and medical history, epidemiology, health economics, and the current uses of aspirin in general practice and in the

Aspirin: The Story of a Wonder Drug

Diarmuid Jeffreys has written an inspiring story based on archival sources, interviews, and an amazing knowledge of the relevant literature that demonstrates that the border between academic medical history and journalistic investigation is blurred.

Platelet-active drugs: the relationships among dose, effectiveness, and side effects: the Seventh ACCP Conference on Antithrombotic and Thrombolytic Therapy.

There is an expanding role for the combination of aspirin and clopidogrel in the long-term management of high-risk patients and the cardiovascular effects of selective and nonselective cyclooxygenase-2 inhibitors have been the subject of increasing attention.

Guidelines On The Investigation and Management Of The Antiphospholipid Syndrome

These revised guidelines on testing for the lupus anticoagulant have been prepared against this background and cover both clinical and laboratory aspects.

Reversal of the anti‐platelet effects of aspirin and clopidogrel

Platelet aggregation recovers within 4 days of stopping aspirin but clopidogrel must be stopped for 10’days to achieve a normal aggregatory response.

Efficacy and safety of low-dose aspirin in polycythemia vera.

Low-dose aspirin can safely prevent thrombotic complications in patients with polycythemia vera who have no contraindications to such treatment, and reduced the risk of the combined end point of nonf fatal myocardial infarction, nonfatal stroke, pulmonary embolism, major venous thromBosis, or death from cardiovascular causes.

A randomized trial of aspirin and sulfinpyrazone in threatened stroke.

  • Medicine, Psychology
    The New England journal of medicine
  • 1978
It is concluded that aspirin is an efficacious drug for men with threatened stroke because it reduces the risk of continuing ischemic attacks and also reduced risk for the "harder," more important events of stroke or death.