Vane, Sir John Robert, 1927–2004, British pharmacologist, Ph.D. Oxford, 1953. With B. I. Samuelsson and Sune K. Bergström, Vane was awarded the 1982 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. The trio won the prize for their identification and description of various compounds known as prostaglandins, which affect such functions as blood pressure and body temperature. Vane's work helped explain the effects on the body of aspirin, the world's most widely used drug and also contributed to the discovery and development of cox-1 and cox-2 inhibitors (see nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug). He was knighted in 1984.
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