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Mentored by a Madman
  1. Rose Bosnell1,
  2. Katharine Harding2
  1. 1Department of Neurology, Gloucestershire Royal Hospital, Gloucester, UK
  2. 2Department of Neurology, University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Katharine Harding, University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff, CF14 4XW, UK; katharineharding{at}

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Mentored by a Madman: The William Burroughs Experiment1 is a beautifully published book by Professor Andrew Lees. As a world-renowned expert in Parkinson’s disease, Lees offers an insight into influences and developments in his career from medical student to current day. The title refers to the remote influence William Burroughs, author, drug addict and one-time medical student, has had on Lees throughout his life. It is a fascinating description of clinical research in the recent past, when it was considered ethical to try any drug you were planning to test on patients on yourself first, and detailed observational clinical studies made significant contributions to neurology. Professor Lees’ most famous contribution to medical research was the discovery of the use of apomorphine in Parkinson’s disease. This book provides a historical context for its development, and also …

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  • Contributors KH and RB read the book, attended their own book clubs, and jointly wrote and revised the manuscript.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; internally peer reviewed.

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  • Editors’ commentary
    Phil E M Smith Geraint N Fuller

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