John Franklin Enders

Facts

John Franklin Enders

Photo from the Nobel Foundation archive.

John Franklin Enders

Born: 10 February 1897, West Hartford, CT, USA

Died: 8 September 1985, Waterford, CT, USA

Affiliation at the time of the award: Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA , Research Division of Infectious Diseases, Children's Medical Center, Boston, MA, USA

Prize motivation: "for their discovery of the ability of poliomyelitis viruses to grow in cultures of various types of tissue."

Prize share: 1/3

Work

Many infectious diseases are caused by viruses - very small biological particles. A virus lacks metabolism of its own and cannot multiply without infecting a living cell. For a long time the prevailing opinion was that viruses could not be cultured in a laboratory. However, in 1941 John Enders, Frederick Robbins, and Thomas Weller succeeded in culturing the virus that causes polio in human muscle and tissue in a laboratory setting. This became an important step on the road toward a vaccine against polio.

To cite this section
MLA style: John F. Enders – Facts. NobelPrize.org. Nobel Media AB 2018. Mon. 24 Sep 2018. <https://www.nobelprize.org/prizes/medicine/1954/enders/facts/>

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