Sir Alexander Fleming (6 August 1881 – 11 March 1955) was a Scottish biologist and pharmacologist. He wrote many articles on bacteriology, immunology, and chemotherapy. His best-known discoveries are the discovery of the enzyme lysozyme in 1923 and the antibiotic substance penicillin from the mold Penicillium notatum in 1928, for which he shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1945 with Howard Florey and Ernst Boris Chain. In 1999, Time magazine named Fleming one of the 100 Most Important People of the 20th Century for his discovery of penicillin, and stated: It was a discovery that would change the course of history. The active ingredient in that mould, which Fleming named penicillin, turned out to be an infection-fighting agent of enormous potency. When it was finally recognised for what it was, the most efficacious life-saving drug in the world, penicillin would alter forever the treatment of bacterial infections. By the middle of the century, Fleming's discovery had spawned a huge pharmaceutical industry, churning out synthetic penicillins that would conquer some of mankind's most ancient scourges, including syphilis, gangrene and tuberculosis Fleming served throughout World War I as a captain in the Royal Army Medical Corps, and was Mentioned in Dispatches. He and many of his colleagues worked in battlefield hospitals at the Western Front in France. In 1918 he returned to St Mary's Hospital, where he was elected Professor of Bacteriology of the University of London in 1928. In 1955, Fleming died at his home in London of a heart attack. He was cremated and his ashes interred in St Paul's Cathedral a week later.
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