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George Canby Robinson (1878-1960) was the former chair of the Department of Medicine and dean of Vanderbilt Medical School who transformed the school in the 1920s by changing the faculty from private physicians to full-time academic professors and leading the efforts in building a brand new medical campus for Vanderbilt University.
Robinson held a medical degree from Johns Hopkins University and served in a variety of positions before being hired by Vanderbilt in 1920. He was a resident pathologist and physician in Philadelphia in the early years of the 1900s and then turned to medical education as an associate professor at the Rockefeller Institute in 1910. From 1913 to 1920, Robinson was an associate professor of medicine at Washington University in St. Louis.
At Vanderbilt, Robinson was able to convince the university that it would be more beneficial to build a new campus for the medical school rather than improve and enlarge the buildings on South Campus. Despite concerns, Robinson was able to raise 7 million dollars, including the largest single grant given to a medical school at the time, to start construction on the new medical school on West Campus. It took four years to complete, but Robinson used the time well. He served as a temporary head of the Johns Hopkins Department of Medicine, toured German and English medical schools, and purchased books and journals for the medical library. He also oversaw the selection of the first physicians to become full-time faculty at the school and sent them to European medical schools to study their education methods. The Vanderbilt Hospital and Medical School opened in 1925.
In 1927, he left Vanderbilt for the position of Director of the new Cornell Medical School, and retired in 1955. Robinson passed away in 1960.
William H. Daughaday was a renown diabetes researcher, an authority on the growth hormone and the former director of the metabolism division at Washington University School of Medicine. Daughaday was at Washington University from 1947 until 1994.
Prior to joining the medical staff at Washington University in 1947, he earned his undergraduate degree from Harvard College in 1940 and his medical degree from Harvard Medical School in 1943. After medical school, Daughaday completed an internship and research fellowship at Boston City Hospital. During WWII, he spent 20 months in the U.S. Army, serving as a medical officer in Italy near the end of the war.
During his time at Washington University, Daughaday was the founding director of Washington University's Diabetes and Endocrinology Research Center in 1975 and that center's successor, the Diabetes Research and Training Center, in 1978. At the center, he trained several generations of respected endocrinologists. Daughaday first came to the medical school as an assistant resident in medicine at Barnes Hospital. Next, he did a research fellowship with Carl and Gerty Cori. Then, he joined the faculty and became the first director of the metabolism division (now the Division of Endocrinology, Metabolism and Lipid Research) in 1951, rising to the rank of professor of medicine in 1963.With Louis Avioli, Daughaday coauthored the first board certification examination for endocrinology and metabolism in 1972. Washington University School of Medicine named him the first Irene E. and Michael M. Karl Professor of Endocrinology and Metabolism in 1983. After his retirement from Washington University, Daughaday joined the faculty at the University of California, Irvine, as a clinical professor of medicine.
As a researcher, Daughaday made numerous pioneering contributions to diabetes research. He discovered insulin-like growth factors, which are proteins that help neurons survive, interact with skeletal muscle tissue and protect cartilage. He also developed and applied tests to detect the presence of growth hormone, proposing that growth hormone acted on the liver to stimulate the release of insulin-like growth factor 1. In addition, Daughaday discovered how tumors that secrete abnormally high levels of insulin-like growth factor 2 can cause profoundly low blood sugar.
Throughout his career, Daughaday was active in the medical academic community. He published more than 300 articles, and his work earned him many honors, including the Fred Conrad Koch Award of the Endocrine Society, election to the American Society for Clinical Investigation and to the Association of American Physicians and the National Academy of Sciences. Daughaday also received Washington University School of Medicine's Second Century Award in 1993. He sat on the NIH advisory council to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases and chaired both the Endocrine Society and the American Board of Internal Medicine's sub-specialty panel on endocrinology and metabolism. Lastly, he served as editor of the Journal of Laboratory and Clinical Medicine and the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism, as well as associate editor of the Journal of Clinical Investigation and as a member of several other editorial boards.
- Born 1946
Dr. D.C. Rao, Professor of Biostatistics, joined the Division of Biostatistics as its Director in 1980. He holds joint appointments as professor in the Departments of Psychiatry, Genetics, and as adjunct professor in the Department of Mathematics. He stepped down as the Division Director at the end of 2019. He is a member and Past-President of the International Genetic Epidemiology Society (1996) and was the founding Editor-in-Chief of the society’s journal, Genetic Epidemiology (1984-91).
Dr. Rao’s overall research interest is the genetic dissection of common complex traits, including GxE interactions in cardiovascular disease, metabolic syndrome, and their co-morbidities. He has published over 700 research articles and is a co-author of six books. He has held many research and training grants as PI, including Coordinating Centers and Data Coordinating Centers for several multicenter family and genetic studies.
Dr. Rao is active in training and mentoring activities: Director of the Biostatistics Education Programs, a Summer Institute Program (PRIDE), and a Post-Doctoral Training Grant.
He received his undergraduate and graduate degrees from the Indian Statistical Institute in Calcutta, India, including a Ph.D. in statistical genetics in 1971.
Division of Bistatistics Faculty Page, accessed22 February 2020. https://biostatistics.wustl.edu/faculty-staff/d-c-rao/
Born in Germany, Ruth Silberberg (1906-1997) studied medicine at the University of Breslau (M.D. 1931) as did her husband Martin Silberberg (1895-1966). They often collaborated on research, particularly the study of aging and degenerative arthritis, until Martin's death in 1966. The Silberbergs met at the University of Breslau, where Martin was Ruth's professor. Martin was already a specialist in bone diseases, experimental cytology, and haematology. While on a Rockefeller traveling fellowship to the United States in 1928 and 1929, Martin worked with Leo Loeb at Washington University. After getting married in 1933, the Silberbergs worked jointly in the Institute of Pathology at Breslau until forced from their positions by the Nazi regime in 1934.
After leaving Germany, the Silberbergs settled in Canada where they joined the department of Pathology at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia. They moved to St. Louis in 1937 to work with Leo Loeb where Ruth was a researcher in the Department of Pathology. The Silberbergs were on staff at New York University in the Department of Pathology from 1941 until 1944. Then the Silberbergs returned to St. Louis to fill positions in the reorganized Department of Pathology at City Hospital and at Jewish Hospital. Both Martin and Ruth were also instructors in the Department of Pathology at Washington University. Ruth became Assistant Professor of Pathology in 1950, Associate Professor in 1957, and a full Professor in 1968. She retired as Professor Emerita and Lecturer in 1975, and later went to live and work in Israel in 1977.
Born in Germany, Martin Silberberg (1895-1966) studied medicine at the University of Breslau (M.D. 1931) as did his wife Ruth Silberberg (1906-1997). They often collaborated on research, particularly the study of aging and degenerative arthritis, until Martin's death in 1966. The Silberbergs met at the University of Breslau, where Martin was Ruth's professor. Martin was already a specialist in bone diseases, experimental cytology, and haematology. While on a Rockefeller traveling fellowship to the United States in 1928 and 1929, Martin worked with Leo Loeb at Washington University. After getting married in 1933, the Silberbergs worked jointly in the Institute of Pathology at Breslau until forced from their positions by the Nazi regime in 1934.
After leaving Germany, the Silberbergs settled in Canada where they joined the department of Pathology at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia. They moved to St. Louis in 1937 to work with Leo Loeb where Ruth was a researcher in the Department of Pathology. The Silberbergs were on staff at New York University in the Department of Pathology from 1941 until 1944. Then the Silberbergs returned to St. Louis to fill positions in the reorganized Department of Pathology at City Hospital and at Jewish Hospital. Both Martin and Ruth were also instructors in the Department of Pathology at Washington University.
Ernest Sachs, MD (1879-1958) was born in New York City to a family gifted in the arts, steeped in academia, and endowed with wealth. Together with Harvey Cushing, he is regarded as one of the founders of American neurosurgery. His father was a classical scholar and a founder of the Teachers College at Columbia University, his uncle was a neurologist noted for the description of Tay-Sachs disease, and his cousin was professor of fine arts at Harvard University. Sachs himself would learn the cello at the age of six.
Sachs attended the newly founded Johns Hopkins Medical School and graduated with high honors in 1904. Following his medical degree, he spent three years as a house officer at Mount Sinai in New York, before pursuing two additional years of study in Vienna, Berlin, and London. Recruited to Washington University after the reorganization of the School of Medicine, Sachs became the pioneering neurosurgeon west of the Mississippi. In 1919, Sachs was named Professor of Neurological Surgery, the first surgeon in the United States with such an appointment.
Known to be forceful, demanding, and a perfectionist, Sachs developed one of the most outstanding neurosurgical centers in the world at Washington University. Dedicated to the care of his patients, he could be gracious, thoughtful, and even gentle. He would also rightfully earn a fearsome, legendary status, among his many students as being intimidating, caustic, and belligerent. For thirty-five years he held his infamous twelve o'clock clinic for the junior medical students in the Barnes Hospital surgical amphitheater know as "The Pit."
In 1949, Sachs abruptly resigned his emeritus professorship at Washington University to accept a position in retirement at Yale University.
Mary Sachs was born Mary Parmly Koues in 1882. She graduated from Smith College in 1912. Sachs published her first play, The Twelfth Disciple, which was performed by the Little Theater of St. Louis company on Broadway at the Waldorf Theatre in New York in 1930. She subsequently composed poetry, a collection of which, entitled Echoes, included poems she wrote between 1898 and 1966 and was published in 1967. She married neurosurgeon Ernest Sachs in 1913.
Ernest Sachs, Jr. was a neurosurgeon. He was born in St. Louis in 1916 to parents, poet, Mary Sachs, and neurosurgeon, Ernest Sachs. After receiving his medical degree from Harvard Medical School in 1942 and serving as a surgeon with the US Army during World War II, he joined the medical staff at the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in 1950. He eventually became chair of the Department of Neurosurgery at Dartmouth College.
Major Gabriel Seelig (1874-1953) was born in Helena, Arkansas. He received an A.B. at Harvard University in 1896. Seelig then received his medical degree in 1900 from the College of Physicians and Surgeons at Columbia University. From 1903 to 1904 he did postgraduate work at the University of Berlin where he studied the history of medicine with Julius Pagel. Seelig took a position as Instructor of Anatomy at St. Louis University in 1908, and he was later promoted to Professor of Anatomy.
During World War I, Seelig served in the Medical Corps of the U.S. Army from 1917 to 1919. After the war, he joined the faculty of Washington University School of Medicine where he served as Professor of Clinical Surgery. He held this position until his retirement in 1947. In addition to his professorship at Washington University, he was Chief of Surgery at Jewish Hospital from 1917 to 1931 and a founder of People's Hospital in 1918. Seelig was also the Director of Research at the Barnard Free Skin and Cancer Hospital from 1931 to 1940, and he served as head of pathology from 1940 to 1947.
Elsworth S. Smith, Jr., M.D. earned his M.D. in 1887 at St. Louis Medical College. He served as professor of clinical medicine at the Washington University Medical Department beginning in 1933. Prior to this, he was on the faculty of St. Louis Medical College from 1890-1899 when it affiliated with Washington University. He was also physician at St. Louis City Hospital (1899) and physician in chief at St. Louis Mullanphy Hospital (1912) among many other hospitals. Elsworth S. Smith was active in professional organizations as a founding member of the St. Louis Society of Internal Medicine and as president of the St. Louis Medical Society in 1918, the American Congress on Internal Medicine in 1924, and the American Therapeutic Society from 1934 to 1936.
*Source: The American Physician and surgeon bluebook: a distinct cyclopedia of 1919, Chicago: American Blue Book publishers, p. 406.
Greenfield Sluder was an ear, nose, and throat surgeon based in St. Louis. He is best known for popularizing the use of subtotal tonsillectomy in 1920. Sluder earned his doctorate from Washington University in 1888 and continued his studies in Europe for several more years. He joined the Washington University staff in 1891 as an instructor of clinical medicine, rising through the ranks to become clinical professor and head of the Department of Laryngology and Rhinology in 1906. By the time of his death, Sluder had written two books and nearly 70 papers.
Frances H. Stewart was born in 1904. She received her medical degree from the Washington University School of Medicine in 1927 and practiced as an obstetrician and gynecologist in St. Louis for over 50 years. Interested in family planning and prenatal care, Stewart served as medical director of Planned Parenthood of St. Louis and on the clinical faculty of the Washington University School of Medicine.
Dr. Frederick J. Taussig was a gynecologist and professor of clinical obstetrics at Washington University Medical School who became a mentor to generations of students beginning in 1907. He earned an A.B. at Harvard in 1893 and an M.D. in 1898 at St. Louis Medical College, a forerunner of the Washington University Medical Department. After an internship at the St. Louis City Hospital for Women where he was also assistant superintendent, Taussig interned in gynecology at the Imperial and Royal Elizabeth Hospital in Vienna from 1901 to 1902. He was one of a number of St. Louis doctors in private practice at the turn of the century who were concerned about the large number of indigent patients riddled with cancer that were unable to get treatment and hospital beds. These doctors banded together to treat indigent patients and encouraged George D. Barnard to provide funds for the Barnard Free Skin and Cancer Hospital. Dr. Taussig wrote a large number of clinical research papers drawn from the careful case records of patients he saw at Barnard Free Skin and Cancer Hospital, Washington University Hospital, St. Louis City Hospital, St. Louis Maternity Hospital, the New Jewish Hospital, and Barnes Hospital.
According to E.V.Cowdry, his colleague at Barnard Hospital, Fred J. Taussig's most significant publication was his book, Abortion, spontaneous and induced: medical and social aspects (1936), 'a classic recognized by medical men and sociologists alike.' Cowdry also observed the boundless energy Taussig brought to directing medical activities of Barnard Hospital at St. Louis and the State Cancer Hospital at Columbia, in addition to private practice, teaching, and research. With Robert Crossen, Frances Stewart, and Lesley Patton, Fred J. Taussig organized the first contraceptive clinic in St. Louis in 1933. The clinic was called the Maternal Health Association of Missouri until about 1943 when the name changed to the Planned Parenthood Clinic of Missouri. He also served on the board of directors at the National Committee on Maternal Health and the National Committee for Maternal Welfare.