Jump to content

Upendranath Brahmachari

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Upendranath Brahmachari
উপেন্দ্রনাথ ব্রহ্মচারী
Sir Upendranath Brahmachari
Born(1873-12-19)19 December 1873
Died6 February 1946(1946-02-06) (aged 72)
Alma mater
SpouseNani Bala Devi
ChildrenPhanindra Nath,
Brahmachari Nirmal,
Kumar Brahmachari
Scientific career
FieldsMedicine, Physician
Doctoral advisorSir Gerald Bomford

Rai Bahadur Sir Upendranath Brahmachari FRSM FRS (Bengali: উপেন্দ্রনাথ ব্রহ্মচারী; 19 December 1873 – 6 February 1946) was a prominent Indian physician and scientist.[1] In 1922, he synthesised urea-stibamine (carbostibamide) and demonstrated its effectiveness in treating kala-azar (visceral leishmaniasis).

Early life[edit]

Brahmachari was born on 19 December 1873 in Sardanga village near Purbasthali, District Burdwan, West Bengal, India. His father, Nilmony Brahmachari, was a physician in East Indian Railways and his mother was Saurabh Sundari Devi. He completed his early education from Eastern Railways Boys' High School in Jamalpur. In 1893, he earned a BA degree from Hooghly Mohsin College with honours in Mathematics and Chemistry. Following this, Brahmachari pursued further studies in Medicine and Higher Chemistry. In 1894, he obtained a master’s degree from Presidency College, Kolkata. In 1898, he married Nani Bala Devi.

In the 1900 M.B. Examination of the University of Calcutta, Brahmachari excelled – first in Medicine and then in Surgery – for which he received the Goodeve and Macleod awards. He earned an MD degree in 1902 and a PhD in 1904 for his research paper on "Studies in Haemolysis", both from the University of Calcutta.[2]

Life and career[edit]

In 1922, Brahmachari discovered a new form of leishmaniasis, which he called dermal leishmanoid. The condition was marked by the appearance of sudden eruptions on the patients’ faces without fever or other symptoms. Brahmachari observed it in partially cured cases of kala-azar as well as in individuals who had no prior history of the disease at all.[3] It has since been termed as post-kala-azar dermal leishmaniasis.

Awards and honours[edit]

Dr. U. N. Brahmachari street renamed from Loudon street, beside Minto park, Kolkata.

Brahmachari was awarded the title of Rai Bahadur and the Kaisar-i-Hind Gold Medal, 1st Class, by the Governor General Lord Lytton (1924).[4] In 1934, he was conferred a knighthood by the British Government.[5]

Brahmachari was a nominee for the Nobel Prize twice in 1929[6] and five times in 1942[7] in the category of physiology or medicine although he never received it. Some sources suggest that his ethinicity may have influenced the Nobel committee’s decision.[8] He served as president of the 23rd session of the Indian Science Congress in Indore (1936) and was also president of the Indian Chemical Society in Calcutta (1936). Brahmachari was honoured with fellowships from the Royal Society of Medicine, London, and the Indian National Science Academy. He was the President of the Asiatic Society of Bengal for two years (1928–29)[9] and also the vice-chairman of the board of Trustees of the Indian Museum.[10]

Important works[edit]

  1. Studies in Haemolysis, Calcutta University, 1909.
  2. Kala-Azar : Its treatment, Butterworth & Co. Ltd. Calcutta 1917.
  3. Kala-Azar in Doctor Carl Mense’s Handbuch der Tropenkranahaiten, vol. IV, 1926.
  4. Treatise on Kala-Azar, John Bale, Son’s & Danielsson Ltd., London, 1928.
  5. Campaign against Kala-Azar in India, Jubilee Publication on the 80th birthday of Dr. Prof. Bernhard Nocht, Hamburg, clique aqui 1937.
  6. Progress of Medical Research work in India during the last 25 years, an progress of Science in India, during the past 25 years, Indian Science Congress Association 1938.
  7. Gleanings from my Researchers Vol. I, Calcutta University 1940
  8. Gleanings from my Researchers Vol. II Calcutta University 1941
  9. Infantile Biliary Cirrhosis in India in British Encyclopedia of Medical practice. Edited by Sir Humphrey Rolleston


  1. ^ Singh, Rajinder; Roy, Syamal (1 March 2019). "U N Brahmachari: Scientific Achievements and Nomination for the Nobel Prize and the Fellowship of the Royal Society of London". Indian Journal of History of Science. 54 (1). doi:10.16943/ijhs/2019/v54i1/49596.
  2. ^ "Vigyan Prasar website – Upendra Nath Brahamachari".
  3. ^ Brahmachari, U. N. (April 1922). "A New Form of Cutaneous Leishmaniasis—Dermal Leishmanoid". The Indian Medical Gazette. 57 (4): 125–127. ISSN 0019-5863. PMC 5186533. PMID 29008368.
  4. ^ London Gazette, 3 June 1924
  5. ^ London Gazette, 1 June 1934
  6. ^ "Nomination Archive". NobelPrize.org. Retrieved 6 February 2020.
  7. ^ "Nomination Archive". NobelPrize.org. Retrieved 6 February 2020.
  8. ^ "Meet Indian genius whose discovery saved lakhs of lives globally, got 6 Nobel nominations, allegedly denied due to..." DNA India. Retrieved 5 November 2023.
  9. ^ "Deceased Fellow". INSA. 2016. Retrieved 13 May 2016.
  10. ^ "Nomination%20archive". April 2020.


  1. Biographical Memoirs of Fellows of the Indian National Science Academy Vol. 4., Indian National Science Academy, New Delhi, 1976.
  2. Dictionary of Medical Biography Vol. 1 A-B, Edited by W. F. Bynum and Helen Bynum, Greenwood Press, 2006

External links[edit]