The Nobel Prize in medicine this year is for the discovery of H. pylori‘s role in ulcers. The scientific community’s reception of this discovery should give us pause about the continuing controversy over ID. When Robin Warren and Barry Marshall first claimed that the bacterium Helicobacter pylori plays a key role in the development of both stomach and intestinal ulcers, they were roundly ridiculed. So much so that Marshall actually infected himself to prove the point:
Dr Marshall proved that H. pylori caused gastic inflammation by deliberately infecting himself with the bacterium. The Nobel citation praises the doctors for their tenacity, and willingness to challenge prevailing dogmas. . . . [At the time] stress and lifestyle were considered the major causes of stomach and intestinal ulcers.
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