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[Perspectives] The social history of ISIS-2: triumph and the path not taken

When the results of the ISIS-2 randomised controlled trial were published in The Lancet on Aug 13, 1988, they were indisputable. Streptokinase, injected over 1 hour after the onset of a heart attack, reduced the risk of dying in the next month by more than 20%. Taking aspirin had a similarly beneficial outcome. Another innovation was that most experts had previously thought, based largely on artificial animal infarct models, that thrombolytic therapy could only work if given within the first few hours after the onset of myocardial infarction.