Karl Landsteiner

About Karl Landsteiner

Who is it?: Physician
Birth Day: June 14, 1868
Birth Place: Vienna, United States
Died On: June 26, 1943(1943-06-26) (aged 75)\nNew York City, New York, U.S.
Birth Sign: Cancer
Citizenship: Austria, Netherlands, US
Alma mater: University of Vienna
Known for: Development of blood group system, discovery of Rh factor, discovery of poliovirus
Awards: Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine (1930) Lasker-DeBakey Clinical Medical Research Award (1946 posthumously) ForMemRS (1941)
Fields: Medicine, virology
Institutions: University of Vienna Rockefeller Institute for Medical Research

Karl Landsteiner Net Worth

Karl Landsteiner was bornon June 14, 1868 in Vienna, United States, is Physician. Karl Landsteiner was an Austrian biologist and physician, who is particularly notable for his work in the field of hematology, which revolutionized the process of blood transfusion. His research in the field of immunology is just as significant as his hematology research, as it led to the isolation of previously deadly viruses and the subsequent development of vaccines against them. Due to his groundbreaking work and singular personality, which has been described as being sad and intense, he acquired many nicknames, including the father of immunology, the father of hematology, and the melancholy genius. Despite the financial hardship Dr. Landsteiner faced during the early years of his career in his native Vienna, he never gave up his beloved research, contributing many important scientific findings during these lean times. Dr. Landsteiner was mentored by some of the leading scientific minds of his time, which no doubt helped him to expand his already prodigious intellect and delve further into his research. He was a man of a solitary nature who preferred to live away from other people, and as such never gave any interviews about his revolutionary work and its impact. Possessing high intelligence and a tireless work ethic, Karl Landsteiner was a scientific pioneer who changed the face of medical treatment forever. Hundreds owe their lives to his research; read on to know more about his contribution to the scientific community
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Awards and nominations:

Landsteiner was posthumously awarded the Lasker-DeBakey Clinical Medical Research Award in 1946 and elected a Foreign Member of the Royal Society (ForMemRS) in 1941.

Biography/Timeline

1818

Landsteiner's Father, Leopold (1818–1875), a renowned Viennese Journalist who was editor-in-chief of Die Presse, died at age 56, when Karl was only 6. This led to a close relationship between him and his mother Fanny (born Hess; 1837–1908). After graduating with the Matura exam from a Vienna secondary school, he took up the study of Medicine at the University of Vienna and wrote his doctoral thesis in 1891. While still a student he published an essay on the influence of diets on the composition of blood.

1890

Landsteiner converted from Judaism to Roman Catholicism in 1890. In 1916 he married Leopoldine Helene Wlasto, a Greek Orthodox who converted to her husband's Roman Catholic faith. In 1937 Landsteiner took legal action (unsuccessfully) against an American publisher who had included him in the book Who's Who in American Jewry, stating that "it will be detrimental to me to emphasize publicly the religion of my ancestors."

1891

From 1891 to 1893, Landsteiner studied chemistry in Würzburg under Hermann Emil Fischer, in München, Eugen Bamberger and in Zürich under Arthur Rudolf Hantzsch. He had a number of publications from that period, some of them in co-operation with his professors.

1897

After returning to Vienna he became an assistant to Max von Gruber at the Hygienic Institute. In his studies he concentrated on the mechanism of immunity and the nature of antibodies. From November 1897 to 1908 Landsteiner was an assistant at the pathological-anatomical institute of the University of Vienna under Anton Weichselbaum, where he published 75 papers, dealing with issues in serology, bacteriology, virology and pathological anatomy. In addition he did some 3,600 autopsies in those ten years. Weichselbaum was Landsteiner's tutor for his postdoctoral lecture qualification in 1903. From 1908 to 1920 Landsteiner was prosector at the Wilhelminenspital in Vienna and in 1911 he was sworn in as an associate professor of pathological anatomy. During that time he discovered – in co-operation with Erwin Popper – the infectious character of Poliomyelitis and isolated the polio virus. In recognition of this groundbreaking discovery, which proved to be the basis for the fight against polio, he was posthumously inducted into the Polio Hall of Fame at Warm Springs, Georgia, which was dedicated in January 1958.

1900

In 1900 Karl Landsteiner found out that the blood of two people under contact agglutinates, and in 1901 he found that this effect was due to contact of blood with blood serum. As a result, he succeeded in identifying the three blood groups A, B and O, which he labelled C, of human blood. Landsteiner also found out that blood transfusion between persons with the same blood group did not lead to the destruction of blood cells, whereas this occurred between persons of different blood groups. Based on his findings, the first successful blood transfusion was performed by Reuben Ottenberg at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York in 1907.

1923

After World War I, Vienna and the new republic of Austria as a whole was in a desolate economic state, a situation in which Landsteiner did not see any possibilities to carry on with his research work. He decided to move to The Netherlands and accepted a post as prosector in the small Catholic St. Joannes de Deo hospital (now MCH Westeinde) in The Hague and, in order to improve his financial situation also took a job in a small factory, producing old tuberculin (tuberculinum prestinum). He also published a number of papers, five of them being published in Dutch by the Royal Academy of Sciences. Yet working conditions proved to be not much better than in post-war Vienna. So Landsteiner accepted the invitation that reached him from New York, initiated by Simon Flexner, who was familiar with Landsteiner's work, to work for the Rockefeller Institute. He arrived there with his family in the spring of 1923. Throughout the 1920s Landsteiner worked on the problems of immunity and allergy. In 1927 he discovered new blood groups: M, N and P, refining the work he had begun 20 years before. Soon after Landsteiner and his collaborator, Philip Levine, published the work and in 1927, the types began to be used in paternity suits.

1930

In today's blood transfusions only concentrates of red blood cells without serum are transmitted, which is of great importance in surgical practice. In 1930 Landsteiner was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in recognition of these achievements. For his pioneering work, he is recognized as the Father of transfusion Medicine.

1946

Landsteiner was posthumously awarded the Lasker-DeBakey Clinical Medical Research Award in 1946 and elected a Foreign Member of the Royal Society (ForMemRS) in 1941.