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PENICILLIN - THE MAGIC BULLET
PENICILLIN - THE MAGIC BULLET
Published: 2012/03/28
Channel: CinéFête
Howard Florey - Amazing People Education Avatar
Howard Florey - Amazing People Education Avatar
Published: 2016/10/12
Channel: Amazing People Worldwide
the story of antibiotics Alexander Fleming Ernst Chain Howard Florey Norman Heatley Edward Abraham
the story of antibiotics Alexander Fleming Ernst Chain Howard Florey Norman Heatley Edward Abraham
Published: 2017/05/27
Channel: Marc Chabot YT
Florey and Chain - the discovery of penicillin
Florey and Chain - the discovery of penicillin
Published: 2014/09/07
Channel: Conor Keogh
Howard Florey Rap
Howard Florey Rap
Published: 2011/05/10
Channel: supermonkeyzoo
The discovery of penicillin (1964)
The discovery of penicillin (1964)
Published: 2010/02/10
Channel: Wellcome Library
How Howard Florey saved the soldiers of WWII
How Howard Florey saved the soldiers of WWII
Published: 2017/11/19
Channel: The Lego Kid
Alexander Fleming, Howard Florey, Ernst Boris Chain y la penicilina
Alexander Fleming, Howard Florey, Ernst Boris Chain y la penicilina
Published: 2016/02/08
Channel: Moisés López Caeiro
INCREDIBLE Nobel Prize Winners
INCREDIBLE Nobel Prize Winners
Published: 2017/11/14
Channel: Talltanic
The Story of Penicillin - Howard Florey
The Story of Penicillin - Howard Florey
Published: 2013/04/09
Channel: FrecklesandForehead
Breaking the mould.avi
Breaking the mould.avi
Published: 2014/03/03
Channel: AJC79
Florey Christmas Video 2016
Florey Christmas Video 2016
Published: 2016/12/02
Channel: Galeregil
Alexander Fleming and the Accidental Mould Juice – The Serendipity of Science (2/3)
Alexander Fleming and the Accidental Mould Juice – The Serendipity of Science (2/3)
Published: 2015/09/15
Channel: OpenLearn from The Open University
Howard Florey
Howard Florey
Published: 2010/09/13
Channel: hugenintendofan
Meilensteine der Naturwissenschaft und Technik   Alexander Fleming, Howard Florey, Ernst Chain und das Penicillin
Meilensteine der Naturwissenschaft und Technik Alexander Fleming, Howard Florey, Ernst Chain und das Penicillin
Published: 2010/10/03
Channel: Cyril Babal
mijlpalen in de biologie: Alexander Fleming, Howard Florey, Ernst Chain, Penicilline
mijlpalen in de biologie: Alexander Fleming, Howard Florey, Ernst Chain, Penicilline
Published: 2013/09/17
Channel: Biologielesjes
Medicine and the Medical Discoveries that Changed the World documentary english Part 1
Medicine and the Medical Discoveries that Changed the World documentary english Part 1
Published: 2013/11/12
Channel: Christine Huschten
Cumbres De Las Ciencias Y La Técnica 032 A Fleming, H Florey, E Chain Y La Penicilina
Cumbres De Las Ciencias Y La Técnica 032 A Fleming, H Florey, E Chain Y La Penicilina
Published: 2014/08/12
Channel: CienciaTv
Fleming, Florey and Chain   Secondary History   Medicine Through Time
Fleming, Florey and Chain Secondary History Medicine Through Time
Published: 2017/11/30
Channel: Clare Dodds
Ernst Chain Antibiotics Pioneer
Ernst Chain Antibiotics Pioneer
Published: 2010/09/04
Channel: Dave Flang
Storms hit the Lord Florey Building
Storms hit the Lord Florey Building
Published: 2007/10/29
Channel: Lozvox
September 24 - Howard Walter Florey, Penicillin & Mangalyaan #ScienceToday #TheSciencePole
September 24 - Howard Walter Florey, Penicillin & Mangalyaan #ScienceToday #TheSciencePole
Published: 2016/09/24
Channel: Praveen Kumar Sayyaparaju
Florey & Chain:Full Throttle
Florey & Chain:Full Throttle
Published: 2006/10/05
Channel: hafftonclafftonda3rd
9 Howard Florey Street ADELAIDE tour SOLD! November 2012
9 Howard Florey Street ADELAIDE tour SOLD! November 2012
Published: 2012/07/18
Channel: David LJ Hooker
Arcimedia - Penicillin: The Magic Bullet
Arcimedia - Penicillin: The Magic Bullet
Published: 2011/07/01
Channel: arcimediacomau
sir-howard-florey reflections
sir-howard-florey reflections
Published: 2014/10/16
Channel: handy zakaria
How to Pronounce Howard W Florey
How to Pronounce Howard W Florey
Published: 2016/12/01
Channel: Dictionary Voice
Howard Florey
Howard Florey
Published: 2016/07/28
Channel: Steve _ MLG
Howard Florey
Howard Florey
Published: 2016/07/28
Channel: Steve _ MLG
Fleming, Florey and Chain and the discovery of penicillin.  Film 15072
Fleming, Florey and Chain and the discovery of penicillin. Film 15072
Published: 2013/09/30
Channel: HuntleyFilmArchives
Howard Florey
Howard Florey
Published: 2016/07/28
Channel: Steve _ MLG
Serendipity Penicillin ABC New Inventors
Serendipity Penicillin ABC New Inventors
Published: 2009/05/28
Channel: plumpbunny
From Fleming to Florey: Leading the Way to the Antibiotic Revolution
From Fleming to Florey: Leading the Way to the Antibiotic Revolution
Published: 2015/02/06
Channel: GregLund1
HIV, AIDS, Antibiotics, Florey and Chain (IB Bio) (2015)
HIV, AIDS, Antibiotics, Florey and Chain (IB Bio) (2015)
Published: 2015/10/27
Channel: Alex Lee
How to Pronounce Howard W. Florey
How to Pronounce Howard W. Florey
Published: 2016/12/01
Channel: Dictionary Voice
Florey and Chain You Are There
Florey and Chain You Are There
Published: 2016/04/21
Channel: Nesha Hill
Melbourne Conversations: Your Brain - How it can change, develop and improve
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Published: 2013/04/23
Channel: Melb Conversations
Penicillin history - Medical Meaning and Pronunciation
Penicillin history - Medical Meaning and Pronunciation
Published: 2017/11/01
Channel: Medical Dictionary
How to Pronounce Howard Walter, Sir Florey
How to Pronounce Howard Walter, Sir Florey
Published: 2016/12/10
Channel: Dictionary Voice
Dott. Giovanni Savignano The Case of Penicillin before and after Lord Florey
Dott. Giovanni Savignano The Case of Penicillin before and after Lord Florey
Published: 2016/03/02
Channel: Pino Biancardo
4 Grandes Genios e Inventos de la Humanidad 4x10
4 Grandes Genios e Inventos de la Humanidad 4x10
Published: 2013/08/16
Channel: Gerard Baron
Florey: Mi Hija Flor
Florey: Mi Hija Flor
Published: 2017/10/11
Channel: PTFlowey
Alexander Fleming Eulogy
Alexander Fleming Eulogy
Published: 2011/04/11
Channel: legomaniac182
How to Pronounce Florey
How to Pronounce Florey
Published: 2016/12/09
Channel: Dictionary Voice
How to Pronounce Florey, Sir
How to Pronounce Florey, Sir
Published: 2016/12/11
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What Did Fleming Discover?
What Did Fleming Discover?
Published: 2017/09/10
Channel: Sea of Question
Florey Ya Caminar
Florey Ya Caminar
Published: 2017/08/29
Channel: PTFlowey
Welcome to the Florey YouTube Channel
Welcome to the Florey YouTube Channel
Published: 2014/09/24
Channel: The Florey Institute of Neuroscience and Mental Health
Penicillin (In Our Time)
Penicillin (In Our Time)
Published: 2017/10/16
Channel: Podcast Zone
¿Sabías que un MELÓN SALVÓ LA VIDA de MILES DE SOLDADOS durante la SEGUNDA GUERRA MUNDIAL?
¿Sabías que un MELÓN SALVÓ LA VIDA de MILES DE SOLDADOS durante la SEGUNDA GUERRA MUNDIAL?
Published: 2017/11/02
Channel: Historias de la Historia
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WIKIPEDIA ARTICLE

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Howard Florey
OM FRS FRCP
Howard Walter Florey 1945.jpg
Born Howard Walter Florey
24 September 1898 (1898-09-24)
Adelaide, South Australia
Died 21 February 1968 (1968-02-22) (aged 69)
Oxford, United Kingdom
Nationality Australian
Education St Peter's College, Adelaide
Alma mater University of Adelaide
Magdalen College, Oxford
Known for Discovery of penicillin's properties
Awards Fellow of the Royal Society (1941)[1]
Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine (1945)
Lister Medal (1945)[2]
Knight Bachelor
Albert Medal (1946)
Royal Medal (1951)
Copley Medal (1957)
Lomonosov Gold Medal (1965)
Wilhelm Exner Medal (1960)
Scientific career
Fields Bacteriology, immunology
Institutions University of Adelaide
University of Oxford
University of Cambridge
University of Sheffield
Australian National University
Influences Charles Sherrington[3]

Howard Walter Florey, OM, FRS, FRCP (24 September 1898 – 21 February 1968) was an Australian pharmacologist and pathologist who shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1945 with Sir Ernst Boris Chain and Sir Alexander Fleming for his role in the development of penicillin. He was appointed a life peer in February 1965 and became Baron Florey.

Although Fleming received most of the credit for the discovery of penicillin, it was Florey who carried out the first ever clinical trials in 1941 of penicillin at the Radcliffe Infirmary in Oxford on the first patient, a constable from Oxford. The patient started to recover but subsequently died because Florey was unable, at that time, to make enough penicillin. It was Florey and Chain who actually made a useful and effective drug out of penicillin, after the task had been abandoned as too difficult.

Florey's discoveries, along with the discoveries of Alexander Fleming and Ernst Chain, are estimated to have saved over 200 million lives,[4] and he is consequently regarded by the Australian scientific and medical community as one of its greatest figures. Sir Robert Menzies, Australia's longest-serving Prime Minister, said, "In terms of world well-being, Florey was the most important man ever born in Australia".[5]

Early life and education[edit]

Howard Florey was the youngest of three children and the only son.[6] His father, Joseph Florey, was an English immigrant, and his mother Bertha Mary Florey was a third-generation Australian.[7] He was born in Adelaide, South Australia, in 1898.

Howard Florey was educated at Kyre College Preparatory School (now Scotch College) and then St Peter's College, Adelaide, where he was a brilliant academic and junior sportsman. He studied medicine at the University of Adelaide from 1917 to 1921. At the university, he met Ethel Reed (Mary Ethel Hayter Reed), another medical student, who became both his wife and his research colleague. The marriage was unhappy, due to Ethel's poor health and Florey's intolerance.[8]

Florey continued his studies at Magdalen College, Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar, receiving the degrees of BA and MA. In 1926, he was elected to a fellowship at Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge, and a year later he received the degree of PhD from the University of Cambridge.

Flasks used in the cultivation of penicillin mould for large-scale production. One of the first flasks (centre) made using a biscuit tin. Ceramic flasks (rear) were used in production of penicillin. (Historical Collections, National Museum of Health and Medicine, M-722.10002, M-722.10003 and M-722.10227)

Career[edit]

After periods in the United States and at Cambridge, Florey was appointed to the Joseph Hunter Chair of Pathology at the University of Sheffield in 1931. In 1935 he returned to Oxford, as Professor of Pathology and Fellow of Lincoln College, Oxford, leading a team of researchers. In 1938, working with Ernst Boris Chain, Norman Heatley and Edward Abraham, he read Alexander Fleming's paper discussing the antibacterial effects of Penicillium notatum mould.

In 1941, he and Chain treated their first patient, Albert Alexander, who had had a small sore at that corner of his mouth, which then spread leading to a severe facial infection involving Streptococci and Staphylococci.[9] His whole face, eyes and scalp were swollen to the extent that he had had an eye removed to relieve some of the pain. Within a day of being given penicillin, he started recovering. However, the researchers did not have enough penicillin to help him to a full recovery, and he relapsed and died. Because of this experience and of the difficulty in producing penicillin, the researchers changed their focus to children, who could be treated with smaller quantities.

Florey's research team investigated the large-scale production of the mould and efficient extraction of the active ingredient, succeeding to the point where, by 1945, penicillin production was an industrial process for the Allies in World War II. However, Florey said that the project was originally driven by scientific interests, and that the medicinal discovery was a bonus:

People sometimes think that I and the others worked on penicillin because we were interested in suffering humanity. I don't think it ever crossed our minds about suffering humanity. This was an interesting scientific exercise, and because it was of some use in medicine is very gratifying, but this was not the reason that we started working on it.

— Howard Florey, [10]

Developing penicillin was a team effort, as these things tend to be

— Howard Florey

Florey shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1945 with Ernst Boris Chain and Alexander Fleming. Fleming first observed the antibiotic properties of the mould that makes penicillin, but it was Chain and Florey who developed it into a useful treatment.[11]

In 1958 Florey opened the John Curtin School of Medical Research at ANU in Canberra. In 1965 the Queen made him Lord Florey and he was offered, and accepted, the role of Chancellor of the Australian National University.

Honours and awards[edit]

On 18 July 1944 Florey was appointed a Knight Bachelor.[12][13] In 1947 he was awarded the Gold Medal of the Royal Society of Medicine.[14]

He was awarded the Lister Medal in 1945 for his contributions to surgical science.[2] The corresponding Lister Oration, given at the Royal College of Surgeons of England later that year, was titled "Use of Micro-organisms for Therapeutic Purposes".[15]

Florey Building

Florey was elected a member of the Royal Society in 1941 and became president in 1958.[1] In 1962, Florey became Provost of The Queen's College, Oxford. During his term as Provost, the college built a new residential block, named the Florey Building in his honour. The building was designed by the British architect Sir James Stirling.

On 4 February 1965, Sir Howard was appointed a life peer and became Baron Florey, of Adelaide in the State of South Australia and Commonwealth of Australia and of Marston in the County of Oxford.[16] This was a higher honour than the knighthood awarded to penicillin's discoverer, Sir Alexander Fleming, and it recognised the monumental work Florey did in making penicillin available in sufficient quantities to save millions of lives in the war, despite Fleming's doubts that this was feasible. On 15 July 1965 Florey was appointed a Member of The Order of Merit.[17]

Florey was Chancellor of the Australian National University from 1965 until his death in 1968. The lecture theatre at the John Curtin School of Medical Research was named for him during his tenure at the ANU.

Posthumous honours[edit]

Australian $50 note in circulation 1973–95

Florey's portrait appeared on the Australian $50 note for 22 years (1973–95), and the suburb of Florey in the Australian Capital Territory is named after him. The Florey Institute of Neuroscience and Mental Health, located at the University of Melbourne, Victoria, and the largest lecture theatre in the University of Adelaide's medical school are also named after him. In 2006, the federal government of Australia renamed the Australian Student Prize, given to outstanding high-school leavers, the "Lord Florey Student Prize", in recognition of Florey.

The Florey Unit [18] of the Royal Berkshire Hospital in Reading, Berkshire, is named after him.

The "Lord Florey Chair" in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Sheffield is named in his honour.

Personal life[edit]

After the death of his wife Ethel, he married in 1967 his long-time colleague and research assistant Margaret Jennings (1904-1994). He died of a heart attack in 1968 and was honoured with a memorial service at Westminster Abbey, London.

Florey was an agnostic.[19]

In popular culture[edit]

"Breaking the Mould" is a 2009 historical drama that tells the story of the development of penicillin in the 1930s/40's, by the group of scientists at Oxford headed by Florey at The Dunn School of Pathology. The film stars Dominic West (as Florey), Denis Lawson, and Oliver Dimsdale; directed by Peter Hoar and written by Kate Brooke.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Abraham, E. P. (1971). "Howard Walter Florey. Baron Florey of Adelaide and Marston 1898-1968". Biographical Memoirs of Fellows of the Royal Society. 17: 255–302. doi:10.1098/rsbm.1971.0011. PMID 11615426. 
  2. ^ a b "Sir Howard Florey, F.R.S.: Lister Medallist". Nature. 155 (3942): 601. 1945. doi:10.1038/155601b0. 
  3. ^ Todman, Donald (2008). "Howard Florey and research on the cerebral circulation". Journal of Clinical Neuroscience. Elsevier. 15: 613–616. doi:10.1016/j.jocn.2007.04.017. His mentor was the neurophysiologist and Nobel Laureate, Sir Charles Sherrington who directed him in neuroscience research. Florey’s initial studies on the cerebral circulation represent an original contribution to medical knowledge and highlight his remarkable scientific method. The mentorship and close personal relationship with Sherrington was a crucial factor in Florey’s early research career. 
  4. ^ Woodward, Billy. "Howard Florey-Over 6 million Lives Saved." Scientists Greater Than Einstein Fresno: Quill Driver Books, 2009 ISBN 1-884956-87-4.
  5. ^ Fenner, Frank (1996). "Florey, Howard Walter (Baron Florey) (1898–1968)". Australian Dictionary of Biography. vol. 14. Melbourne University Press. pp. 188–190. Retrieved 10 October 2008. 
  6. ^ P43 The Mold in Dr Flory's Coat by Eric Lax.
  7. ^ V. Quirke, Howard Walter Florey
  8. ^ Fenner, Frank. "Mary Ethel Hayter Florey". Australian Dictionary of Biography. 
  9. ^ MacFarlane, Gwyn (1979). "The proving of penicillin". Howard Florey : the making of a great scientist. Oxford: Oxford Univ. Pr. pp. 327–346. ISBN 9780198581611. 
  10. ^ Bright Sparcs – Australasian Science article: Howard Florey
  11. ^ Judson, Horace Freeland (20 October 2003). "No Nobel Prize for Whining". The New York Times. NYTimes. Retrieved 23 June 2010. 
  12. ^ "No. 36620". The London Gazette. 21 July 1944. pp. 3415–3416. 
  13. ^ The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 1945. nobelprize.org
  14. ^ Moore, George. The Creators. 
  15. ^ Florey, H. W. (1945). "Use of Micro-organisms for Therapeutic Purposes". BMJ. 2 (4427): 635–642. doi:10.1136/bmj.2.4427.635. PMC 2060276Freely accessible. PMID 20786386. 
  16. ^ "No. 43571". The London Gazette. 9 February 1965. p. 1373. 
  17. ^ "No. 43713". The London Gazette. 16 July 1965. p. 6729. 
  18. ^ Sexual Health Department Archived 21 October 2009 at the Wayback Machine.. royalberkshire.nhs.uk
  19. ^ Trevor Illtyd Williams (1984). Howard Florey, Penicillin and After. Oxford University Press. p. 363. ISBN 978-0-19-858173-4. As an agnostic, the chapel services meant nothing to Florey but, unlike some contemporary scientists, he was not aggressive in his disbelief. 

Further reading[edit]

Academic offices
Preceded by
John Cockcroft
Chancellor of the Australian National University
1965 – 1968
Succeeded by
H. C. Coombs

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