The American Chemical Society and The Royal Society of Chemistry designated the discovery of
histamine H2-receptor antagonists, which led to the development of the anti-ulcer drug Tagamet®,
as an International Historic Chemical Landmark in ceremonies at SmithKline Beecham's research facilities
(now GlaxoSmithKline) at Harlow, United Kingdom, on November 24, 1997, and King of Prussia, Pennsylvania,
on February 27, 1998. The text of the plaques at the two sites reads:
Pioneering work by scientists in the laboratories of this company led to the first clinically
effective inhibitor of gastric acid secretion. The worldwide introduction of cimetidine (Tagamet)
revolutionized the treatment of peptic ulcers by dramatically reducing the need for surgical intervention.
The work is recognized as the classic example of the systematic modification of a natural messenger
substance (histamine) to create a therapeutically useful blocking agent. Effective commercialization of
this discovery was greatly facilitated by the subsequent investigation and design of novel synthetic routes,
which led to the development of an efficient chemical manufacturing process.
The Royal Society of Chemistry's Historic Chemical Landmarks can be found at http://www.rsc.org/lap/publicaf/landmarks.htm.
Designed by MSK Partners, Hunt Valley, Maryland.