Sir Alexander Fleming-Father of Antibiotics

Topics: Alexander Fleming, Penicillin, Antibiotic Pages: 2 (638 words) Published: February 5, 2012
Sir Alexander Fleming
Alexander Fleming is a Scottish biologist and pharmacologist. He was born at Lochfield near Darvel in Ayrshire, Scotland on August 6th, 1881. In 1999, the Times magazine named Fleming one of the 100 Most Important People of the 20th Century for his discovery of penicillin. While penicillin is widely cited as one of the most important discoveries of the 20th century, uncertainty over whether or not Alexander Fleming actually discovered it caused many to question his 1945 Nobel Prize for Medicine. Critics questioned the novelty of Fleming's find, referencing studies dating back to the 1870s that note the bacteria-fighting properties of the mold Penicillium notatum. Even Fleming himself admitted the discovery was a complete accident and conceded that the first known reference to penicillin was actually from Psalm 51: "Purge me with hyssop and I shall be clean." In the end though, he was indeed the first person to isolate and produce penicillin, which has since saved millions of lives worldwide, so he is worthy of high praise. So, after completing his education at Regent Street Polytechnic in London in 1897, he took an office job for a few years. In 1901, he quit his job and went to St. Mary Hospital to study medicine. Then he worked in Almroth Wright's research team as a research assistant with a strong interest in bacteriology. During the war between Britain and Germany in 1914, Fleming joined the British Royal Army Medical Corps to develop a cure to reduce the number of soldiers dying from infected wounds. He argued that antiseptics were not effective in preventing wounds from becoming infected. His argument was, however, rejected and little was done to relieve the suffering of many wounded soldiers. On the whole, he was a talented man who not only made a great contribution to bacteriology, immunology, but was also behind a number of billions of people, who were saved with the help of his discovery. When World War I was over, Fleming...
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