Home' Australian Pharmacist : Australian Pharmacist December 2014 Contents Australian Pharmacist December 2014 I © Pharmaceutical Society of Australia Ltd.
GSK awards peptide research
Plants with peptide-based drugs in their
seeds and leaves, and pain relief from
cone snail venom, are two of Professor
David Craik’s research areas.
Last month his research was recognised
when he won the 34th GSK Award for
Professor Craik, a biological chemist from
the University of Queensland’s Institute for
Molecular Bioscience and a Fellow of the
Australian Academy of Science, discovered
the largest known family of circular
proteins, called cyclotides, which he is
using to develop drug design approaches
to treat pain and disease, and insecticides
to protect Australian food and fibre crops.
Professor Craik’s research was originally
inspired by a Norwegian doctor’s
discovery of an African tea which assisted
‘ The tea shortened labour,’ Professor Craik
said, ‘but at the time they didn’t know why
the plant-based medicine worked.’
Twenty years later Professor Craik made
his discovery. ‘It was the unusual circular
structure of the molecules. We knew
peptides had great potential, but were
previously unable to be taken orally as the
digestive system would break them down.
Our circular peptides are joined from head
to tail, which makes them much stronger.
‘I did extensive fieldwork in Africa and
elsewhere searching for plants with similar
circular peptides to understand their
Professor Craik went on to develop the
chemistry for making ‘designer’ cyclotides,
which can be used to develop new drugs
with improved oral availability with few
‘My team has been working on using
cone snail venom as a pain relief drug
100 times more potent than morphine.
We are also producing peptide-based
drug leads for chronic diseases in edible
plant seeds, which we hope will give
developing countries access to produce
vital medicines at relatively low cost.
Pharmacists’ oath released
The International Pharmaceutical Federation
(FIP) has released an oath for pharmacists.
The oath is intended for use at events in
schools of pharmacy to launch students
towards their studies or at public events
such as graduation ceremonies and
professional conferences. Pharmacy
associations and institutions around the
world may also choose to use the FIP oath
as a model to be adapted according to their
Developed by FIP’s Working Group
on Pharmacist Ethics and Professional
Autonomy, the wording of the oath was
adopted by the Council of FIP in Bangkok,
Thailand, on 31 August.
Dr Betty Chaar from the University of Sydney
and co-chair of the working group told
Australian Pharmacist: ‘The Hippocratic
Oath for the medical profession has served
as a cornerstone for centuries (since the
4th Century BC) and is still revered as a core
reference for ethical domains of healthcare
around the world.
‘ The Oath for Pharmacists is a long
overdue proclamation of cohesive,
clearly articulated commitment to the
essence of our professional role in society.
It is succinct and powerful, and more
importantly, it is timely. It was introduced
by FIP in an international effort to boost
professional identity and sense of purpose
in new generations of pharmacists, who
increasingly express disillusion and
disappointment with prospects for the
profession they trained years to belong to,’
‘It is now up to the profession and the
education institutions in Australia to adopt,
promote and vocalise this Oath at formal
gatherings and graduation ceremonies. Lead
the way Australia.’
Professor Bill Zellmer, the other co-chair
of the working group said: ‘Although
some pharmacy oaths already exist,
an advantage of the FIP model is that
pharmacists can be confident it was
prepared with an international perspective,
taking into account the most fundamental
principles that guide the ethical behaviour
of members of our profession.
EVIFYNE, the Lilly authorised raloxifene
generic, is available on the PBS for
patients from 1 December 2014.
EVIFYNE, identical in formulation and
active ingredient to EVISTA, is the only
authorised EVISTA generic from Lilly.
EVIFYNE has the same tablet appearance
and ingredients to EVISTA1,2
, which can
help avoid patient confusion.
EVIFYNE is indicated for:1
• The prevention and treatment of
osteoporosis in post-menopausal
• The reduction in risk of invasive breast
cancer in post-menopausal women
• The reduction in risk of invasive breast
cancer in post-menopausal women at
high risk for invasive breast cancer.*
*EVIFYNE is PBS listed for the treatment
of established postmenopausal
osteoporosis in patients with fracture
due to minimal trauma, and not PBS
listed for the reduction in risk of invasive
breast cancer in postmenopausal
women with osteoporosis or in
postmenopausal women at high risk of
invasive breast cancer.
Contact your Aspen Generic
representative for pricing information
on Evista and Evifyne on (03) 8792 2580
1. EVIFYNETM Approved Product Information, Nov 2012.
2. EVISTA® Approved Product Information, Nov 2008.
3. NPS News 76: Generic medicines – informing patients
about multiple brands, Dec 2011.
4. NPS News 44: Generic medicines: same difference? Febr 2006.
5. Schedule of Pharmaceutical Benefits, www.pbs.gov.au,
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