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What Latisse and Viagra Have in Common. (And it’s not what you’re thinking.)

latisse Knoxville
Latisse and Viagra were both discovered by accident.

Essentially, when the glaucoma eyedrop known as Lumigan entered its third phase of clinical studies, Allergan researchers noticed that it was making people’s eyelashes grow. Encouraged by the drug’s eyelash-enhancing effects, the company soon started considering the cosmetic applications that could be derived from it’s active ingredient, bimatoprost.

Applied directly to the base of the lashes, Latisse keeps hairs in their growth phase, producing longer, darker and thicker eyelashes. It contains a much smaller amount of bimatoprost than Lumigan, as it is intended for daily use.

Many medical breakthroughs have been made in a similar way. Alexander Fleming’s unexpected discovery of penicillin is the most famous example. Fleming was conducting research on the flu and noticed that mold was growing in one of his petri dishes. Upon closer inspection, he realized that the area with the mold had no bacteria and proceeded to develop our very first antibiotic.

The more recent accidental breakthrough is Viagra. Most people don’t realize that Viagra was originally intended as a cardiovascular drug. Early in the clinical trials, scientists at Pfizer realized that it was not effective in treating heart ailments, but they decided to continue to study one of the drug’s unexpected side effects.

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