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Loeb, Leo, 1869-1959
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- Loeb, Leo
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Leo Loeb was born in Mayen, Germany on September 21, 1869 and studied at the Universities of Heidelberg, Berlin, Basle, and Freiburg. He received his medical degree from the University of Zurich in 1897. Upon graduation he moved to Chicago, Illinois at the age of 27 and briefly established a private practice. After only 10 months of working as a private practitioner, he decided to devote more of his time to research, so he joined the Department of Pathology at the University of Illinois. In 1904, Dr. Loeb accepted a position at the University of Pennsylvania as Professor of Experimental Pathology.
Dr. Loeb moved to Saint Louis in 1910 to become the Director of the Department of Pathology at the Barnard Skin and Cancer Hospital. His long association with the Washington University School of Medicine began in 1915, when he became Professor of Comparative Pathology. Following the resignation of Eugene Opie, he became Professor of Pathology and head of the department in 1924.
Dr. Loeb was a charter member of the American Association for Cancer Research and served as president of that association in 1911. Among the many honors he received throughout his career was his election to the National Academy of Sciences in 1937. Dr. Loeb retired as emeritus Professor of Pathology that year, but even at the age of 72, he and continued his experimental investigations and focused a majority of his time writing. His book titled The Biological Basis of Individuality was published in 1945, and at the time of his death in 1959, Loeb was working on two additional books. One is on mental processes and titled Psychical Goods or The Imponderables. The other unfinished book is concerned with the causes and nature of cancer.
His autobiography in Ingles' A dozen doctors (1963) gives fascinating details of his life in Germany, Switzerland, and the United States.
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Created December 16, 2019
Revised January 6, 2020
Ashley Chase; revised by Martha Riley