Modern Medicine Individuals


Alexander Flemming

He discovered penicillin by chance in 1928, and thereby revolutionised the way that doctors treated disease and infection in patients. He also discovered that the mould on the petri dish had created a bacteria free circle around itself. He named the active subsstance in the mould 'penicillin'. The development of penicillin marked the start of modern antibiotics, and saved an estimated 200 million lives in less than 70 years.

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Howard Florey and Ernst Chain

Developed the discovery by Alexander Flemming into an actual medical treatment, using funding from the US government.

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Harold Gilles and Archibald Mclndoe

These men both helped the invention of Skin Grafts. Skin grafts were used to reconstruct faces and hands destroyed by fires. Mclondoe carried out 4000 operations on soilders who had been burned during WW2. Gilles and his collegues at a special hosptial for army repairs helped remend 5000 soilders. 

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Wilhelm Röntgen

A German scientist who discovered X-Rays in 1895. Within months of him publishing his discovery, the first X-ray machines were being used in hospitals to identify diseases and broken bones.

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Marie and Pierre Curie

Polish scientist who worked with her French husband to develop radiation therapy. Building on Rontgen's discovery of X-rays, they notices that their hands were being burned by the material that they were handling. They investiagated this further and this led to the discovery of radium, which has been used ever since to diagnose and treat cancer, often reducing the need for surgery.

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Karl Landsteiner

Discovered the existence of different blood groups in 1901. After this, successful blood transfusions became possible, but only if the donor and the patient were in the same place, because the blood would quickly clot and become useless. This problem was solved during WW1. There was a huge need for blood, so scientists researched ways that blood could be stored without clotting. Sodium citrate was added to the blood which did eventually solve the problem.

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Charles Booth

Liverpool businessman and friend of Octavia Hill. Collected evidence about poverty in the East End of London during 1866. He discovered that 35% of people were living in poverty. He was appalled by these results, and argued that the government had to take resposibility for caring for people in poverty. One of his suggestions was an old-age pension.

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Seebohm Rowntree

A reformers who investigated poverty and living conditions in York. Published 'Poverty: a Study of Town Life' in 1901. This report showed that the people of york were living in poverty eventhough they were in work, and this was having a serious impact on their health. This lead him to increase his own workers' wages.

In 1941 he published a new report 'Progress and Poverty' which showed a 50% reduction in poverty since 1901.

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