Eric S. Boodman

Eric S. Boodman

“The Medicine Hunters”


A captivating narrative, this two-part series chronicles a young woman’s personal and financial struggle with Gorlin syndrome, a rare condition that can cause perpetual skin cancers and other tumors. The well-researched series also recounts researchers’ discovery of hedgehog inhibitors, a class of drugs with potential to treat Gorlin and other cancers, after linking the consumption of cow cabbage by sheep in Idaho to the birth of one-eyed lambs. By presenting patients and scientists as “medicine hunters,” the piece asks a moral question key to biomedical research: Should patients who help companies develop a drug, by participating in clinical trials, be guaranteed access to the drug if it is approved?

Read Part One Read Part Two