Alexander lived in the home of his elder brother, Tom, who was a doctor of medicine. Most of the Fleming family ended up living with Tom, leaving the eldest brother, Hugh, running the farm. Alexander attended the Polytechnic School, where he studied business and commerce.
- Early Life and Education
- Scientific Contributions
- Personal Life
- Awards and Legacy
- Further Reading
- External Links
Born on 6 August 1881 at Lochfield farm near Darvel, in Ayrshire, Scotland, Alexander Fleming was the third of four children of farmer Hugh Fleming (1816–1888) and Grace Stirling Morton (1848–1928), the daughter of a neighbouring farmer. Hugh Fleming had four surviving children from his first marriage. He was 59 at the time of his second marriage to Grace, and died when Alexander was seven. Fleming went to Loudoun Moor School and Darvel School, and earned a two-year scholarship to Kilmarnock Academy before moving to London, where he attended the Royal Polytechnic Institution. After working in a shipping office for four years, the twenty-year-old Alexander Fleming inherited some money from an uncle, John Fleming. His elder brother, Tom, was already a physician and suggested to him that he should follow the same career, and so in 1903, the younger Alexander enrolled at St Mary's Hospital Medical School in Paddington; he qualified with an MBBSdegree from the school with distinction in...
During World War I, Fleming with Leonard Colebrook and Sir Almroth Wright joined the war efforts and practically moved the entire Inoculation Department of St Mary's to the British military hospital at Boulogne-sur-Mer. Serving as Temporary Lieutenant of the Royal Army Medical Corps, he witnessed the death of many soldiers from sepsis resulting from infected wounds. Antiseptics, which were used at the time to treat infected wounds, he observed, often worsened the injuries. In an article publi...
Discovery of lysozyme
At St Mary's Hospital, Fleming continued his investigations into bacteria culture and antibacterial substances. As his research scholar at the time V.D. Allison recalled, Fleming was not a tidy researcher and usually expected unusual bacterial growths in his culture plates. Fleming had teased Allison of his "excessive tidiness in the laboratory," and Allison rightly attributed such untidiness as the success of Fleming's experiments, and said, "[If] he had been as tidy as he thought I was, he...
On 24 December 1915, Fleming married a trained nurse, Sarah Marion McElroy of Killala, County Mayo, Ireland. Their only child, Robert Fleming (1924–2015), became a general medical practitioner. After his first wife's death in 1949, Fleming married Amalia Koutsouri-Vourekas, a Greekcolleague at St. Mary's, on 9 April 1953; she died in 1986. Fleming came from a Presbyterian background, while his first wife Sarah was a (lapsed) Roman Catholic. It is said that he was not particularly religious, and their son Robert was later received into the Anglican church, while still reportedly inheriting his two parents' fairly irreligious disposition. When Fleming learned of Robert D. Coghill and Andrew J. Moyer patenting the method of penicillin production in US in 1944,he was furious, and commented: From 1921 until his death in 1955, Fleming owned a country home named "The Dhoon" in Barton Mills, Suffolk.
On 11 March 1955, Fleming died at his home in London of a heart attack. His ashes are buried in St Paul's Cathedral.
Fleming's discovery of penicillin changed the world of modern medicine by introducing the age of useful antibiotics; penicillin has saved, and is still saving, millions of people around the world. The laboratory at St Mary's Hospital where Fleming discovered penicillin is home to the Fleming Museum, a popular London attraction. His alma mater, St Mary's Hospital Medical School, merged with Imperial College London in 1988. The Sir Alexander Fleming Building on the South Kensington campus was opened in 1998, where his son Robert and his great granddaughter Claire were presented to the Queen; it is now one of the main preclinical teaching sites of the Imperial College School of Medicine. His other alma mater, the Royal Polytechnic Institution (now the University of Westminster) has named one of its student halls of residence Alexander Fleming House, which is near to Old Street. The Fleming crater on the moon is named after Alexander and Williamina Fleming.
The Fleming myth
By 1942, penicillin was produced as pure compound, but still in short supply and not available for clinical use. When Fleming used the first few samples from the Oxford team to treat Harry Lambert who had streptococcal meningitis, the successful treatment was a major news, particularly popularised in The Times. But Wright was a bit surprised as the discoverers Fleming and the Oxford team were not mentioned, though Oxford was attributed as the source of the drug. Wright wrote a letter to the e...
The popular story of Winston Churchill's father paying for Fleming's education after Fleming's father saved young Winston from death is false. According to the biography, Penicillin Man: Alexander Fleming and the Antibiotic Revolution by Kevin Brown, Alexander Fleming, in a letter to his friend and colleague Andre Gratia, described this as "A wondrous fable." Nor did he save Winston Churchill himself during World War II. Churchill was saved by Lord Moran, using sulphonamides, since he had no...The Life Of Sir Alexander Fleming, Jonathan Cape, 1959. Maurois, André.Nobel Lectures, the Physiology or Medicine 1942–1962, Elsevier Publishing Company, Amsterdam, 1964An Outline History of Medicine. London: Butterworths, 1985. Rhodes, Philip.The Cambridge Illustrated History of Medicine. Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press, 1996. Porter, Roy, ed.
Media related to Alexander Flemingat Wikimedia Commons 1. Alexander Fleming Obituary 2. Alexander Fleming on Nobelprize.org including the Nobel Lecture, 11 December 1945 Penicillin 3. Some places and memories related to Alexander Fleming 4. Newspaper clippings about Alexander Fleming in the 20th Century Press Archives of the ZBW
People also ask
Who was Alexander Fleming and what did he discover?
When did Alexander Fleming discover the antibiotic penicillin?
How old was John Fleming when he discovered bacteria?
How did Alexander the Great get Typhoid fever?
CONTENTS KENTUCKY ANCESTORS GENEALOGICAL QUARTERLY OF THE KENTUCKY HISTORICAL SOCIETY Listed below are the contents of Kentucky Ancestors from the first issue in 1965 to the current issue in a searchable PDF format.
- Early History
- Early Scientific Evidence
- The Breakthrough Discovery
- First Medical Use
- Mass Production
- Chemical Analysis
- Development of Penicillin-Derivatives
- Drug Resistance
Many ancient cultures, including those in Egypt, Greece and India, independently discovered the useful properties of fungi and plants in treating infection. These treatments often worked because many organisms, including many species of mould, naturally produce antibioticsubstances. However, ancient practitioners could not precisely identify or isolate the active components in these organisms. In 17th-century Poland, wet bread was mixed with spider webs (which often contained fungal spores) to treat wounds. The technique was mentioned by Henryk Sienkiewicz in his 1884 book With Fire and Sword. In England in 1640, the idea of using mould as a form of medical treatment was recorded by apothecaries such as John Parkinson, King's Herbarian, who advocated the use of mould in his book on pharmacology.
1. In the early stages of penicillin research, most species of Penicillium were generally referred to as Penicillium glaucum, so we cannot identify the actual strains used. Thus, it is difficult to tell whether it was really penicillin preventing bacterial growth.
Penicillin was discovered by a Scottish physician Alexander Fleming in 1928. While working at St Mary's Hospital, London, Fleming was investigating the pattern of variation in S. aureus. He was inspired by the discovery of an Irish physician Joseph Warwick Bigger and his two students C.R. Boland and R.A.Q. O’meara at the Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland, in 1927. Bigger and his students found that when they cultured a particular strain of S. aureus, which they designated "Y" that they isolate...
In August, Fleming spent a vacation with his family at his country home The Dhoon at Barton Mills, Suffolk. Before leaving his laboratory, he inoculated several culture plates with S. aureus. He kept the plates aside on one corner of the table away from direct sunlight and to make space for Craddock to work in his absence. While in a vacation, he was appointed Professor of Bacteriology at the St Mary's Hospital Medical School on 1 September 1928. He arrived at his laboratory on 3 September, w...
Fleming went off to resume his vacation and returned for the experiments late in September.He collected the original mould and grew them in culture plates. After four days he found that the plates developed large colonies of the mould. He repeated the experiment with the same bacteria-killing results. He later recounted his experience: He concluded that the mould was releasing a substance that was inhibiting bacterial growth, and he produced culture broth of the mould and subsequently concent...
In 1939, Ernst Boris Chain, a German (later naturalised British) chemist, joined the Sir William Dunn School of Pathology at the University of Oxford to investigate on antibiotics. He was immediately impressed by Fleming's 1929 paper and informed his supervisor an Australian scientist Howard Florey (later Baron Florey) of the potential drug. By then Florey had acquired research grant of $25,000 from the Rockefeller Foundation for studying antibiotics. He assembled a research team including Edward Abraham, Arthur Duncan Gardner, Norman Heatley, Margaret Jennings, J. Orr-Ewing and G. Sanders in addition to Chain. The Oxford team prepared a concentrated extract of P. rubens as "a brown powder" that "has been obtained which is freely soluble in water". They found that the powder was not only effective in vitro against bacterial cultures but also and in vivo against bacterial infection in mice. On 5 May 1939, they injected a group of eight mice with a virulent strain of S. aureus and inj...
Fleming performed the first clinical trial with penicillin on Craddock. Craddock had developed severe infection of the nasal antrum (sinusitis) and had undergone surgery. Fleming made use of the surgical opening of the nasal passage and started injecting penicillin on 9 January 1929 but without any effect. It probably was due to the fact that the infection was with influenza bacillus (Haemophilus influenzae), the bacterium which he had found unsusceptible to penicillin. Fleming gave some of his original penicillin samples to his colleague-surgeon Arthur Dickson Wright for clinical test in 1928. Although Wright reportedly said that it "seemed to work satisfactorily,"there are no records of its specific use. Cecil George Paine, a pathologist at the Royal Infirmary in Sheffield, was the first to successfully use penicillin for medical treatment. He was a former student of Fleming and when he learned of the discovery, asked the penicillin sample from Fleming. He initially attempted to t...
Knowing that large-scale production for medical use was futile in a confined laboratory, the Oxford team tried to convince war-torn British government and private companies for mass production but in vain. Florey and Heatley travelled to the US in June 1941 to persuade US government and pharmaceutical companies there. Knowing that keeping the mould sample in vials could be easily lost, they instead smeared their coat pockets with the mould. They arrived in Washington D.C. in early July to discuss with Ross Granville Harrison, chairman of the National Research Council (NRC), and Charles Thom and Percy Wells of the United States Department of Agriculture. They were directed to approach the USDA Northern Regional Research Laboratory (NRRL, now the National Center for Agricultural Utilization Research) where large-scale fermentations were done. They reached Peoria, Illinois, on 14 July to meet Andrew Jackson Moyer and Robert D. Coghill at the NRRL. The Americans quickly worked on the mo...
The chemical structure of penicillin was first proposed by Edward Abraham in 1942. Dorothy Hodgkin determined the correct chemical structure of penicillin using X-ray crystallography at Oxford in 1945. In 1945, the US Committee on Medical Research and the British Medical Research Council jointly published in Science a chemical analyses done at different universities, pharmaceutical companies and government research departments. The report announced the existence of different forms of penicillin compounds which all shared the same structural component called β-lactam.The penicillins were given various names such as using Roman numerals in UK (such as penicillin I, II, III) in order their discoveries and letters (such as F, G, K, and X) referring to their origins or sources, as below: The chemical names were based on the side chainsof the compounds. To avoid the controversial names, Chain introduced in 1948 the chemical names as standard nomenclature, remarking as: "To make the nomenc...
Fleming, Florey and Chain equally shared the 1945 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine"for the discovery of penicillin and its curative effect in various infectious diseases." Methods for production and isolation of penicillin were patented by Andrew Jackson Moyer in US in 1945. Chain had wanted to file a patent, Florey and his teammates objected to it arguing that it should be a benefit for all. Sir Henry Dale specifically advised that doing so would be unethical.When Fleming learned of the American patents on penicillin production, he was infuriated and commented: Dorothy Hodgkin received the 1964 Nobel Prize in Chemistry"for her determinations by X-ray techniques of the structures of important biochemical substances."
The narrow range of treatable diseases or "spectrum of activity" of the penicillins, along with the poor activity of the orally active phenoxymethylpenicillin, led to the search for derivatives of penicillin that could treat a wider range of infections. The isolation of 6-APA, the nucleus of penicillin, allowed for the preparation of semisynthetic penicillins, with various improvements over benzylpenicillin (bioavailability, spectrum, stability, tolerance). The first major development was ampicillin in 1961. It was produced by Beecham Research Laboratories in London. It was more advantageous than the original penicillin as it offered a broader spectrum of activity against Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria. Further development yielded β-lactamase-resistant penicillins, including flucloxacillin, dicloxacillin, and methicillin. These were significant for their activity against β-lactamase-producing bacterial species, but were ineffective against the methicillin-resistant Staphyl...
Fleming warned the possibility of penicillin resistance in clinical conditions in his Nobel Lecture, and said: In 1940, Ernst Chain and Edward Abraham reported the first indication of antibiotic resistance to penicillin, an E. coli strain that produced the penicillinase enzyme, which was capable of breaking down penicillin and completely negating its antibacterial effect. Chain and Abraham worked out the chemical nature of penicillinase which they reported in Natureas: In 1942, strains of Staphylococcus aureus had been documented to have developed a strong resistance to penicillin. Most of the strains were resistant to penicillin by the 1960s. In 1967, Streptococcus pneumoniaewas also reported to be penicillin resistant. Many strains of bacteria have eventually developed a resistance to penicillin.
Read exclusive biographies, watch videos & discover fascinating stories about your favorite icons, musicians, authors & historical figures.
Angus MacAskill (1825 – 8 August 1863) was a Scottish-born Canadian giant. The 1981 Guinness Book of World Records says he is the tallest non-pathological giant in recorded history (7 ft 9 in, or 2.36 m) and had the largest chest measurements of any non-obese man (80 inches, or 200 cm).
Alexander III of Macedon (Greek: Αλέξανδρος, Aléxandros; 20/21 July 356 BC – 10/11 June 323 BC), commonly known as Alexander the Great, was a king of the ancient Greek kingdom of Macedonia. A member of the Argead dynasty, he was born in Pella—a city in Ancient Greece—in 356 BC.
May 13, 2014 · Alexander’s father, Philip II of Macedon, hired Aristotle, one of history’s greatest philosophers,, to educate the 13-year-old prince. Little is known about Alexander’s three-year tutelage ...
- Early Life
- Professional Playing Career
- Awards and Honors
- Broadcasting Career
- Personal Life and Death
- External Links
Seaver was born in Fresno, California, to Betty Lee (née Cline) and Charles Henry Seaver. He attended Fresno High School and was a pitcher for the school's baseball team. Seaver compensated for his lack of size and strength by developing great control on the mound. Despite being an All-City basketball player, he hoped to play baseball in college. He joined the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve on June 28, 1962. He served with AIRFMFPAC 29 Palms, California, through July 1963. After six months of active duty in the reserve, Seaver enrolled at Fresno City College.He remained a part-time member of the reserve until his eight-year commitment ended in 1970. The University of Southern California (USC) recruited Seaver to play college baseball. Unsure as to whether Seaver was worthy of a scholarship, USC sent him to pitch in Alaska for the Alaska Goldpanners of Fairbanks in the summer of 1964. After a stellar season, in which he pitched and won a game in the national tournament with a grand slam,...
In 1966, Seaver was 12–12 with a 3.13 earned run average pitching in Class AAA with the Jacksonville Suns, the Mets' affiliate in the International League.
New York Mets
Seaver made the Mets' roster in 1967, was named to the 1967 All-Star Game, and got the save by pitching a scoreless 15th inning. In his rookie season, Seaver was 16–13 for the last-place Mets, with 18 complete games, 170 strikeouts, and a 2.76 earned run average. Seaver was named the 1967 National League Rookie of the Year. Seaver started for the Mets on Opening Day in 1968. He won 16 games again during that season, and recorded over 200 strikeouts for the first of nine consecutive seasons, b...
By 1977, free agency had begun and contract negotiations between Mets' ownership and Seaver were not going well. Seaver wanted to renegotiate his contract to bring his salary in line with what other top pitchers were making, but chairman of the board M. Donald Grant, who by that time had been given carte blanche by Mets management to do what he wished, refused to budge. Longtime New York Daily News columnist Dick Young regularly wrote negative columns about Seaver's "greedy" demands. Seaver a...
The Mets retired Seaver's uniform number 41 in 1988 in a Tom Seaver Day ceremony, making him the franchise's first player to be so honored. Seaver was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame on January 7, 1992, with the then-highest percentage of votes with 98.84%. He was named on 425 out of 430 ballots. Three of the five ballots that had omitted Seaver were blank, cast by writers protesting the Hall's decision to make Pete Rose ineligible for consideration. One ballot was sent by a writer who was recovering from open-heart surgery and failed to notice Seaver's name. The fifth "no" vote was cast by a writer who said he never voted for any player in their first year of eligibility. Seaver is one of two players enshrined in the Hall of Fame with a Mets cap on his plaque, along with Mike Piazza. He was also inducted into the New York Mets Hall of Fame, the Marine Corps Sports Hall of Fame, and the Cincinnati Reds Hall of Fame. On September 28, 2006, Seaver was chosen as the "Hometown Hero...
Only Seaver and Walter Johnson have 300 wins, 3,000 strikeouts, and an earned run average under 3.00. Seaver's 16 Opening-Day starts are an MLB record. At the time of his retirement, he was third on MLB's all-time strikeout list (3,640), trailing only his former teammate Nolan Ryan and Steve Carlton; he currently ranks sixth all time. Seaver is tied with Ryan for the seventh-most shutouts in MLB history (61). No major league pitcher has matched his feat of striking out ten consecutive batters. He also holds the record for consecutive 200-strikeout seasons with nine (1968–1976). In 1999, Seaver ranked 32nd on Sporting News' list of the 100 Greatest Baseball Players, the only player to have spent a majority of his career with the Mets to make the list. In 2016, ESPN.com ranked Seaver 34th on its list of the greatest MLB players, while The Athleticranked him the 41st-greatest player in 2020. Seaver could also help himself at the plate. A decent hitter and proficient bunter, Seaver hit...
Seaver's television broadcasting experience dated back to his playing career, when he was invited to serve as a World Series analyst for ABC in 1977 and for NBC in 1978, 1980, and 1982. Also while an active player, Seaver called the 1981 National League Division Series between Montreal and Philadelphia and that year's National League Championship Series alongside Dick Enbergfor NBC. After retiring as a player, Seaver worked as a television color commentator for the Mets, the New York Yankees, and with Vin Scully in 1989 for NBC. Seaver replaced Joe Garagiola as NBC's lead baseball color commentator, which led to him calling the 1989 All-Star Game and National League Championship Series. He worked as an analyst for Yankees' telecasts on WPIX from 1989 to 1993 and for Mets telecasts on WPIX from 1999 to 2005, making him one of three sportscasters to be regular announcers for both teams; the others are Fran Healy and Tim McCarver.
Seaver married Nancy Lynn McIntyre on June 9, 1966. They were the parents of two daughters, Sarah and Annie. They lived in Calistoga, California, where Seaver started his own 3.5-acre (1.4 ha) vineyard, Seaver Family Vineyards, on his 116-acre (47 ha) estate, in 2002. His first vintage was produced in 2005. He presented his two cabernets, "Nancy's Fancy" and "GTS," at an April 2010 wine-tasting event in SoHo, to positive reviews. His media nickname referred to the cartoon character Tom Terrific. In 2019, NFL quarterback Tom Brady was denied the trademark "Tom Terrific", when the United States Patent and Trademark Officesaid it "may falsely suggest a connection with Tom Seaver". In 2013, it was reported that Seaver suffered from memory loss, not even remembering long-term acquaintances and experiencing symptoms of "sleep disorder, nausea, and a general overall feeling of chemical imbalance". According to former teammate Bud Harrelson, Seaver was "otherwise doing well". On March 7, 20...
- related to: mountain fever by tom alexander fleming biography pdf