Charles Thomas Beer
|Charles Thomas Beer|
18 November 1915|
Leigh, Dorset, England
|Died||15 June 2010(aged 94)|
Born in Leigh, Dorset, England, he received a D.Phil in Chemistry from Oxford in 1948. He came to North America in the early 1950s to the department of medical research at the University of Western Ontario to work with Robert L. Noble. Together they isolated the anti-cancer drug vinblastine from the leaves of the Madagascar periwinkle plant (vinca rosea) at the University of Western Ontario in 1958. The discovery of vinblastine is generally considered a milestone in the development of chemotherapy.
In 1960, he became Professor of Biochemistry at the University of British Columbia. After his retirement, he remained an Honorary Senior Research Scientist in the department of cancer endocrinology at the British Columbia Cancer Agency.
- Canadian Medical Hall of Fame profile
- His cancer breakthrough started with periwinkle, 12 test tubes, a rack and a spatula Globe and Mail obituary, 12 July 2010
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