Some 11 years ago, eight healthy young men took part in a clinical trial of an experimental leukemia drug known as TGN1412. At first glance, it was a clinical trial like every other clinical trial. The drug was previously tested on monkeys, and it was time for a human test.
The drug manipulated the immune system. What was supposed to be a routine clinical trial at an independent clinic, turned out to be one of the most infamous medical emergencies in recent British history.
Just an hour after receiving the drug, six of the volunteers were rushed to intensive care. They fought for their lives.
This documentary tells the story of the infamous medical emergency of a drug trial going terribly wrong. As some of the medical persons tell the story, “It was all manic, everything was happening all at once, they were all vomiting, screaming in pain, and fainting”.
The symptoms are known as “cytokine storm”, and feature symptoms like high temperature, organs failing, bodies swelling. Newspapers dubbed them “The elephant man”.