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Journal of Medical Biography

Armond S Goldman, Frank C Schmalsteig
Karl Landsteiner applied the sciences of biochemistry, pathology, microbiology, and immunology in medical research to great success during the first half of the 20th century. Although he is principally known for elucidating the major blood group antigens A and B and their isoantibodies for which he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, Landsteiner made many other important medical discoveries. In that respect, he ascertained that paralytic poliomyelitis was due to a virus, the pancreas was damaged in cystic fibrosis, simple chemicals called haptens were able to combine with antibodies, and the Rh antigen that was later found to be the principal cause of hemolytic anemia of the newborn was found in most humans...
November 24, 2016: Journal of Medical Biography
Henry Connor
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
November 24, 2016: Journal of Medical Biography
Khushbir Bath, Sourabh Aggarwal, Vishal Sharma
Sushruta has been regarded as one of the pioneers of surgery. He performed procedures with crude surgical instruments that paved the path for today's operations. However, his existence is shrouded in myth and mystery. Sushruta belonged to a rich heritage of learned scholars and practiced and taught surgery at Benares University around 600BC. His work is assembled into a monumental thesis, possibly the first text book on surgery, the 'Sushruta Samhita' where he describes surgical instruments, procedures, illnesses, medicinal plants and preparation, dissection and the study of human anatomy, embryology and fractures...
November 24, 2016: Journal of Medical Biography
Richard Biddle
Doctor William Gunn had a long and varied career in the Royal Navy. After spending time on anti-slavery patrols along the west coast of Africa, he was posted to the south Pacific. At Pitcairn Island, he treated the inhabitants during an influenza epidemic, proving himself to be a determined and dedicated practitioner. Subsequently, he was appointed head of the medical department at Chatham Royal Dockyard (1859-1865), an appointment that coincided with the final stages of the Royal Navy's transition from sail and wood to steam and iron...
November 24, 2016: Journal of Medical Biography
Ka-Wai Fan
This article is about a Japanese parasitologist, Yoshitaka Komiya (1900-1976), who was invited to China for a schistosomiasis investigation in 1956. In 1955, Chairman Mao initiated a national campaign to eliminate schistosomiasis, which at that time was still common in southern China, and for this purpose, the People's Republic of China invited Yoshitaka Komiya to China. He published a report based on his observations during this visit. This article aims to explore the meaning of Komiya's visit to the People's Republic of China and his observations about the anti-schistosomiasis campaign...
November 24, 2016: Journal of Medical Biography
Kleonikos A Tsakiris
Saint Ioannis Lampadistis is a Cypriot saint of the Greek Orthodox Church, widely venerated in his island of origin. He lived during the 11th century and was blinded by ingesting contaminated fish in the mountainous area of Galata, withdrew from civil life when he was 18, and died at the age of 22. The reason for his blindness remains unknown, though it is widely attributed to an unknown poison related to the copper mines of the region. As fish is the end reservoir of organic mercury, it is quite possible that his blindness was the result of heavy metal toxicity...
September 29, 2016: Journal of Medical Biography
Daniel Esau
When first described in 1958, Burkitt lymphoma was considered by many to be an African curiosity. However, over the next few decades, over 10,000 publications on Burkitt lymphoma would influence many facets of oncology research including immunology, molecular genetics, chemotherapy, and viral oncology. At the time of discovery, its distribution in equatorial Africa was unique; it was where a child was born and lived, and not what race they were, that conveyed the greatest incidence risk. Its association with Epstein-Barr virus brought attention to the possibility that oncogenesis may be influenced by viruses...
September 28, 2016: Journal of Medical Biography
Jonathan Rt Davidson
The effect of World War 1 military service on composers has been neglected in comparison with poets and artists. This article describes the wartime service of Arthur Bliss, Ralph Vaughan Williams, Ivor Gurney, EJ Moeran, Gordon Jacob, Patrick Hadley, and Maurice Ravel. The relationship between experiences of combat and the psychological health of these men is examined, with consideration being given to predisposition and possible causative influences of military service on their later careers, examined from individual and societal perspectives...
September 28, 2016: Journal of Medical Biography
Catrin H Wigley
Dr Jerome Pierce Webster is best remembered as the 'founder of plastic surgery education in the United States' on the basis of developing his nation's first plastic surgery residency programme, his role in the founding of the American Board of Plastic Surgery, and, more generally, his influence in professionalising this subspecialty. He also deserves to be remembered for his extensive missionary work in China, his publications as a successful bibliographer, and as an accomplished historian.
September 28, 2016: Journal of Medical Biography
Ronald P Rubin
Alfred Gilman was best known for his co-authorship with Louis Goodman of the seminal textbook on pharmacology The Pharmacological Basis of Therapeutics in 1941. The book made the discipline of pharmacology relevant to clinical medicine by providing a link between the basic medical sciences and the practice of medicine. Gilman was also instrumental in establishing the use of chemotherapy in the treatment of cancer and made important contributions in areas related to renal function, acid-base balance, and diuretics...
September 28, 2016: Journal of Medical Biography
Paul E Kopperman, Jeanne Abrams
While the vocation of Cotton Mather (1663-1728) was his ministry in Boston, he made important contributions to medicine, most famously in helping to introduce variolation to New England in 1721-22 and in writing The Angel of Bethesda (1724), the first medical treatise produced in Colonial North America. This article, however, focuses on an earlier initiative, Mather's efforts to quell the epidemic of measles that struck Boston in 1713, killing among many others his wife and three children. Historians have devoted little attention to this episode or to measles in general, even though the disease was highly mortal during the colonial period...
September 15, 2016: Journal of Medical Biography
Louis Heyse-Moore
During most of his adult life, in counterpoint to his fame in describing the theory of evolution, Charles Darwin was chronically ill. He consulted many doctors with only limited and temporary success. His symptoms were many and varied. His doctors favoured dyspepsia or suppressed gout as the diagnosis. The Water Cure was only effective initially. Many diagnoses have been proposed by physicians since then. Perhaps he suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), not instead of but as well as other physical problems...
September 15, 2016: Journal of Medical Biography
Halil Tekiner
Besides being a founding member of the Ottoman Medical Society (est. 1867) and general director of the Imperial Military and Civil medical schools in Istanbul, Dr Ahmed Hilmi Pasha offered a pathology course for the first time in the Ottoman Empire. He also translated various medical textbooks from French, and he paved the way for using Turkish in Ottoman medical education.
September 15, 2016: Journal of Medical Biography
Mikaela I Poling
While many authors have surveyed the contributions of Victor Almon McKusick, MD (21 October 1921-22 July 2008) to establishing the field of medical genetics, no authors have reviewed his significant contributions as an historian to the field of the history of medicine. In discussing relevant biographical themes and their functional influence in his life, his philosophical approach to the study of the history of medicine and his unique historiography, blending various major schools of thought into a hybrid analytical approach to historical research, was evaluated...
September 14, 2016: Journal of Medical Biography
Vincent de Parades
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
November 2016: Journal of Medical Biography
Rami Bou Khalil, Ruwan Jayatunge
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
August 26, 2016: Journal of Medical Biography
Anders Gaarn du Jardin Nielsen, Neil H Metcalfe
The 150th anniversary of the birth of the Danish nutritionist Mikkel Hindhede (1862-1945) fell on 13 February 2012. He was brought up in a farming family and despite family traditions he chose an academic path and became a medical doctor in 1888 and he was ahead of his time and emphasized a healthy life style rather than polypharmacy. He was convinced that the Danish population ate far too much meat and investigated and debated this matter frequently. In 1910, the Danish government allocated Hindhede a laboratory to study human nutrition where he carried out several nutritional experiments on humans...
August 26, 2016: Journal of Medical Biography
Christine M Ball
The London surgeon and anaesthetist, Joseph Thomas Clover (1825-1882), and the Birmingham surgeon, Joseph Sampson Gamgee (1828-1886), are well known figures in the history of medicine. Draft letters among the surviving papers of Joseph Clover have been transcribed and reveal new information about their friendship, their financial affairs and Clover's motivation to become a full-time anaesthetist. They have also led to the discovery that Gamgee was briefly imprisoned in Warwick County Goal for debt in 1859.
August 26, 2016: Journal of Medical Biography
Lech Bieganowski, Andrzej Grzybowski
Peter of Tilleberi (Tilbury), later known as bishop Thomas of Wroclaw, after completing his studies (in Bologna or in Montpellier) worked as a physician in northern Italy and probably in Spain. Later through Germany and Bohemia, he came to Wroclaw in 1336 where he joined the Order of St. Dominic. In 1352, Thomas was made an auxiliary bishop of the diocese of Wroclaw. After the episcopal consecration, Thomas stopped living in the abbey, but all the time he was well known both as a priest and physician. He is known as an author of several treatises on medical sciences...
August 26, 2016: Journal of Medical Biography
Louis Fu
With the introduction of Western medicine into China by Anglo-American medical missionaries in the early 19th century, Reverend Dr Peter Parker at the Canton Ophthalmic Hospital pioneered surgical operations in Chinese patients. The subsequent development of surgery for bladder stones at this institute by Parker's successor Dr John Kerr and colleagues is described.
August 15, 2016: Journal of Medical Biography
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