Homer Smith

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This article is about the American scientist. For the football coach, see Homer Smith (American football).

Dr Homer William Smith (January 2, 1895 – March 25, 1962) was an American physiologist and an advocate for science, who spent most of his career at New York University School of Medicine.[1] His research work focused on the kidney and he discovered inulin at the same time as A.N. Richards. Dr. Smith authored several books including From Fish to Philosopher, Man and His Gods,[1] and The Kidney: Structure and function in health and disease’'.[2]

Homer Smith's elegant experiments on the kidney in the 1930s proved beyond any doubt that it operated according to physical principles, both as a filter and a secretory organ, eliminating the last vestige of Vitalism in physiology.[2]

He also served on the board of trustees of Science Service, now known as Society for Science & the Public, from 1952-1955.[2]

Dr. Smith is survived by his son, Homer Wilson Smith.[2]

  • "What engineer, wishing to regulate the compostion of the internal environment of the body on which the function of every bone, gland, muscle, and nerve depends, would devise a scheme that operated by throwing the whole thing out 16 times a day and rely on grabbing from it, as it fell to earth, only those precious elements which he wanted to keep?"[3]


  1. ^ "Homer W. Smith: Man and His Gods". positiveatheism.org. 
  2. ^ a b c d Bynum, W.F. (2000). Smith, Homer William. American National Biography Online. 
  3. ^ Brunton, Laurence (2011). Goodman & Gilman’s: The Pharmacological Bases of Therapeutics. China: The McGrqw-Hill Companies. p. 671. ISBN 9780071624428. 

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