Students who shook the medical world
One medical student's contribution to medicine nearly won him a Nobel prize, and others have been immortalised eponymously.Sanjay A Pai investigates
- By: Sanjay A Pai
Who discovered insulin? Ask any medical student, and chances are that the answer will be “Banting and Best.” Some students might even be aware that Charles Best was a medical student at the time he was involved in this exciting research. Few will know of other medical students who were involved in research of historical interest. Research, after all, is usually associated with senior scientists working in laboratories. But the list of students who've made important contributions to science is long-and you'll be surprised to see some familiar names.
To head the list, of course, is the name already mentioned-Charles Best. Frederick Banting, an orthopaedic surgeon with an unsuccessful practice, decided to switch to research. In 1921, he approached John Macleod, professor of physiology at the University of Toronto, with a project to discover a cure for diabetes mellitus, then a great killer. He asked for an assistant and, after