Dr. Esteban González Burchard , M.D., M.P.H.
Assistant Professor of Biopharmaceutical Sciences and Medicine,
University of California, San Francisco
Dr. Esteban Burchard grew up in the
Latino section of San Francisco, the Mission District, with his mother a former
migrant worker who later became a teacher. When Burchard was a
resident, he conceived the idea for
the Genetics of Asthma in Latino Americans (GALA) Study, which compares genetic,
environmental, and clinical characteristics between Puerto Rican and Mexican
asthmatics. Puerto Rican children have the highest asthma prevalence, morbidity
and mortality, yet they do not achieve the same benefit from asthma medications
as other populations. From this study, Dr. Burchard has discovered that Puerto
Rican children have lower drug response to albuterol, the most commonly
prescribed bronchodilator asthma medication, than Mexican children. Dr.
Burchard’s findings help explain why subjects of Mexican or
Rican ancestry differ in their
response to bronchodilators and raises questions about the efficacy of
medications for minority populations.
What we saw was a pretty clear
to a commercially prescribed medicine. To
mind, that is a