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Dr. Richard H. Hunt qualified from Edinburgh University in 1966 and served in the Royal Navy until 1982, retiring as a Surgeon Commander. He is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians of London, Edinburgh, and Canada, and of the American College of Gastroenterology. He has been recognized with many prizes and medals for his work in gastroenterology where his special interests focus on the acid-related disorders and the clinical pharmacology of treatment of gastrointestinal disease. He is also widely recognized for an extensive interest in colorectal disease, colonoscopy, and therapeutic endoscopy.
Richard Hunt was President of the Canadian Association of Gastroenterology 1992-93. He is currently Vice President of the Canadian Digestive Disease Foundation and also is President of the Canadian Helicobacter Study Group.
He has been Associate Editor of the Esophagus, Duodenum, and Stomach sections of Gastroenterology, and a member of the Editorial Boards of 19 scientific journals. He has been Visiting Professor at Universities in the USA, Canada, Australia, Europe, South East Asia and South Africa, and has been an invited lecturer to universities and hospitals throughout the world.
He has published over 600 papers and abstracts including authoritative papers on clinical pharmacology, peptic ulcer disease, gastroesophageal reflux disease, Helicobacter pylori infection, colonic disease, and colonoscopy. He is the author or editor of 11 books and 55 chapters, and has produced 20 TV video films on peptic ulcer disease, reflux esophagitis, and colonoscopy.
Since 1982, Dr. Hunt has been Professor of Medicine at McMaster University. He was the first Director of the Intestinal Disease Research Unit, and of the Division of Gastroenterology at McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, establishing its international reputation.
- What made you decide to become a gastroenterologist?
- While serving in the Royal Navy I was influenced by the high prevalence of peptic ulcer and inflammatory bowel disease encountered in an essentially young population, and also by the enthusiasm of my then Consultant, Godfrey Milton-Thompson.
- Who was the teacher you admired the most?
- I was very influenced by three of my mentors, a neurologist Dr William Goody and two gastroenterologists, Sir Francis Avery Jones and Dame Sheila Sherlock - each of whom, in their own way, showed me their approach to medicine in its broadest and cultural sense.
- Which research paper (by another person) influenced you the most?
- The paper which started it all for me was Jim Black's paper on the histamine H2 receptor: Black JW, Duncan WA, Durant CJ, Ganellin CR, Parsons EM. Nature 1972; 236: 385-90. This had a marked impact on my career, and those of many others who went on to develop the clinical application of this observation.
- What is the most important fact that you have discovered?
- Defining the effect of dose and duration of treatment with anti-secretory drugs on the degree and duration of acid suppression, and the relationship of these parameters to healing and symptom relief in ulcer disease and gastroesophageal reflux disease. Is there an optimal degree of acid suppression for healing of duodenal ulcers? A model of the relationship between ulcer healing and acid suppression. Burget DW, Chiverton SG, Hunt RH. Gastroenterology 1999; 99: 345-51.
- What is the biggest mistake that you have made?
- My email address is ...........!
- What is your unfulfilled ambition?
- To effect a change in some of the traditional concepts of medicine, with particular respect to specialist training and the integration of thinking in medicine at both a clinical and basic research level.
- What is your greatest regret?
- Not having learned to play a musical instrument. I resisted my mother's suggestion that I learn the piano with ridiculous stupidity. I have regretted it from my early adult life, but time has permitted any belated attempt to rectify this!
- How do you relax?
- I very much enjoy reading and music, especially opera. I love to travel, enjoy an interest in wine and have been known to waste my time on complex computerized flight simulation, which just gets better and better and ever more realistic!!
- What is your favorite sport?
- Rowing, which I did seriously in my youth. I still follow it closely, although from an arm chair or the beer tent rather than in a boat!
- What is your best place in the world?
- Northern Italy, especially the area around Siena in central Tuscany - wonderful scenery and culture, wonderful climate and wonderful food and wine.
- What is your favorite film?
- I don't watch many movies except when travelling on airplanes! Probably the old classics such as The Cruel Sea, because of my naval affiliations, or Casablanca which is still a wonderful film.
- What car do you drive?
- A BMW 323, which has practical comfort combined with excellent performance - a real pleasure to drive.
- What is your best electronic 'toy'?
- Probably my Toshiba Tecra 8100 laptop because it allows me to communicate from almost any location and can synchromize with my office, PDA and electronic camera.
- What book are you reading at the moment?
- 'The Spice Islands Voyage: The Quest for Alfred Wallace, The Man Who Shared Darwin's Discovery of Evolution' by Tim Severin.
- Why did you get in involved in GastroHep.com?
- I am a firm believer in the electronic age and the importance of using the best means available to communicate, learn and keep up to date. Currently available web sites in gastroenterology have become heavily influenced by commercial pressures. GastroHep.com has the potential to provide a strong clinical and academic influence, and leadership.