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Bernardo Houssay

Bernardo Alberto Houssay was an Argentine physiologist who in 1947 with Carl Ferdinand Cori and Gerty Cori received Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine for their discovery of the role played by pituitary hormones in regulating the amount of blood sugar (glucose) in animals. He is the first Argentine and Latin American Nobel laureate in the Sciences.

Bernardo Alberto Houssay was born in Buenos Aires, to emigres from France, Albert and Clara Houssay. A precocious youngster, he was admitted to the Pharmacy School at the University of Buenos Aires at 14 years of age and subsequently to the Medical School of the same University from 1904 to 1910, beginning when he was only 17 years old. While a third year medical student, Houssay took up a post as a research and teaching assistant in the Chair of Physiology.

In 1919 Houssay was appointed to the chair of physiology at the University of Buenos Aires Medicine School, and, until 1943, he transformed and directed it into a highly respected research department in experimental physiology and medicine of international class. In that year, however, the military dictatorship deprived him of his university posts, due to his liberal political ideas and Houssay was forced to re-establish his research lines and staff at a privately funded Instituto de Biologia y Medicina Experimental. This situation, reinforced by a second dismissal by the Peronista government in 1945, was prolonged until 1955, when Peron was ousted from power and Houssay was reinstated in the University of Buenos Aires, where he remained till he died. His retirement. After this he was also director of the National Scientific and Technical Research Council, from 1957 on.

Related websites

The Role of the Hypophysis in Carbohydrate Metabolism and in Diabetes

Official site of his life and works

Bernardo Alberto Houssay

Bernardo Alberto Houssay Biography

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