Gideon Mer

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Gideon Mer with assistant, 1955.
Gideon Mer's house in Rosh Pina.

Gideon Mer (Hebrew: גדעון מר‎, born 1894, died 22 March 1961) was an Israeli scientist whose work was mostly concerned with the eradication of malaria.


Gideon Mer was born in Lithuania, then part of Imperial Russia. He studied medicine in France. He immigrated to Palestine in 1914. During World War I he was a medical officer in the Jewish Legion, a unit of the British Army, and served at Gallipoli, in Palestine, Syria, and Turkey. After the war he returned to Rosh Pina, a Jewish settlement in the north of Palestine, and his laboratory there eventually became a research station for the study of the bionomics of mosquitoes and methods of malaria control. With the opening of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem he joined the Department of Preventive Medicine.

During the Second World War Mer served in the British Forces with the rank of colonel and was malaria adviser to Middle East Command. After the war he joined the staff of the new school of medicine and became chief malaria adviser to the Ministry of Health in Israel, of which he was acting director in 1956 and 1957. As malaria was brought under control Professor Mer investigated the control of other insects, particularly the horse-fly, and the Rosh Pina research station undertook the testing of insecticides and the training of scientists.

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