Ernest William Goodpasture
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|Ernest William Goodpasture, M.D.|
|Born||October 17, 1886
|Died||September 20, 1960
|Fields||Pathology and Infectious Diseases|
|Alma mater||Vanderbilt University &Johns Hopkins Medical School|
|Doctoral advisor||George H. Whipple|
|Known for||Goodpasture's syndrome|
Dr. Ernest William Goodpasture (October 17, 1886 – September 20, 1960) was an American pathologist and physician. Goodpasture advanced the scientific understanding of the pathogenesis of infectious diseases, parasitism, and a variety of rickettsial and viral infections. Together with colleagues at Vanderbilt University, he invented methods for growing viruses and rickettsiae in chicken embryos and fertilized chicken eggs. This enabled the development of vaccines against influenza, chicken pox, smallpox, yellow fever, typhus, Rocky mountain spotted fever and other diseases. He also described Goodpasture's syndrome (see below).
Education & professional career 
Goodpasture was born in Clarksville, TN in 1886. He received his B.A. from Vanderbilt University in 1908. In 1912, Goodpasture graduated from Johns Hopkins Medical School with an M.D. degree. It was there, under professors William H. Welch and George H. Whipple, that he was subsequently appointed a Rockefeller Fellow in pathology; he held this position from 1912-1915. Thereafter, Goodpasture joined the faculty of Harvard Medical School, as an attending pathologist at the Penter Bent Brigham Hospital and assistant professor of pathology in Boston. During that time, Dr. Goodpasture took a 2-year leave of absence to serve during World War I as a medical officer in the United States Navy. In 1919, he undertook a pathological study of the then-ongoing influenza pandemic. In doing so, he identified a patient whose infection was followed by a peculiar illness that featured hemoptysis and acute glomerulonephritis. That condition—now known as Goodpasture's syndrome-- is currently recognized as an immunologically-mediated disease caused by autoantibodies that bind to pulmonary-alveolar as well as glomerular-capillary basement membranes. After leaving Harvard in 1921, Goodpasture worked at the University of the Philippines College of Medicine in Manila. From 1922-1924 he was the director of William H. Singer Memorial Laboratories in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. In 1924 Goodpasture was invited to return to Vanderbilt as professor and chairman of the Department of Pathology, the School of Medicine having been recently reorganized. He accepted, and held that position until 1955. Goodpasture also was the Dean of the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine from 1945 to 1950. After retirement from the latter institution in 1955, he was invited to serve as director of the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology (AFIP) in Washington, D.C. He did so through 1959, helping to reorganize and expand the Institute's scientific mission.
As mentioned above, Dr. Goodpasture's scientific research principally concerned infectious diseases, such as the neural spread of herpes viruses, identification of the mumps virus, development of antiviral vaccines, and studies of rickettsial, fungal, and protozoan human diseases. He was a dedicated and patient teacher for medical students, graduate students, and house officers in pathology.
Dr. Goodpasture received several prestigious scientific awards during his career. They included the H.T. Ricketts Award, the Kober Medal, the Kovalenko Medal of the National Academy of Science, and the Gold-Headed Cane Award from the American Association of Pathologists. He was on the boards of the Rockefeller Foundation, the National Academy of Science, the American Philosophical Society, the Trustees of Vanderbilt University, the Advisory Committee on Biology & Medicine of the Atomic Energy Commission, and the National Research Council. Goodpasture received honorary doctorates from Yale University, Washington University, the University of Chicago, and Tulane University.
After retirement from the AFIP, Dr. Goodpasture returned to Nashville. He died suddenly from a myocardial infarction (heart attack) in September 1960.
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- Tennessee Encyclopedia: Ernest William Goodpasture
- Ernest William Goodpasture: Scientist, Scholar, Gentleman