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Toolkit:Safety and Justice/Baffled
Who's boss when saving lives
Breakthrough on ulcers
Dr Warren, a pathologist from Perth, Australia, paved the way for the breakthrough when he discovered that small curved bacteria colonised the lower part of the stomach in about 50% of patients from which biopsies had been taken. Dr Marshall proved that H. pylori caused gastric inflammation by deliberately infecting himself with the bacterium. The Nobel citation praises the doctors for their tenacity, and willingness to challenge prevailing dogmas. "By using technologies generally available they made an irrefutable case that the bacterium H. pylori is causing disease. By culturing the bacteria they made them amenable to scientific study."
It is thought that H. pylori infection can trigger an ulcer by stimulating increased acid production in the stomach, leading to damage to the stomach or intestinal lining.
Lord May of Oxford, President of the Royal Society, said: "The work by Barry Marshall and Robin Warren produced one of the most radical and important changes in the last 50 years in the perception of a medical condition. Their results led to the recognition that gastric disorders are infectious diseases, and overturned the previous view that they were physiological illnesses."
Landing on Hudson
Back to stable
This unit is normally constantly kept at a slight under-pressure, thus making sure that chlorine is naturally pulled into the destruction unit, making it a fail-safe system.
During maintenance activities, the panel operator noticed that the under-pressure of the destruction unit reduced, from -20 to -10. If this trend would continue, the system would end up at 0 or over-pressurized, rendering it ineffective. There were people out in the plant doing various activities, and they would also be at risk. The chief operator did not know what caused this problem, but immediately gave the crew instructions to reverse all the actions taken over the past few hours, and to restore the system back to the previously known stable point.
It turned out this was the correct action. It also turned out that the pressure problem was a result of an as-yet unidentified design flaw in the system.