Alexander Fleming was born in rural Lochfield, in East Ayrshire, Scotland, on August 6, 1881. His parents, Hugh and Grace were farmers, and Alexander was one of their four children. He also had four half-siblings who were the surviving children from his father Hugh's first marriage. He attended the Louden Moor School, the Darvel School and Kilmarnock Academy before moving toLondon in 1895, where he lived with his older brother, Thomas Fleming. In London, Fleming finished his basic education at the Regent Street Polytechnic
Fleming was a member of the Territorial Army, and served from 1900 to 1914 in the London Scottish Regiment. He entered the medical field in 1901, studying at St. Mary's Hospital Medical School at the University of London. While at St. Mary's, he wonthe 1908 gold medal as the top medical student.
Discovery: By 1927, Fleming had been investigating the properties of staphylococci. He was already well-known from his earlier work, and had developed a reputation as a brilliant researcher, but his laboratory was often untidy. On 3 September 1928, Fleming returned to his laboratory having spent August on holiday with his family. Before leaving, hehad stacked all his cultures of staphylococci on a bench in a corner of his laboratory. On returning, Fleming noticed that one culture was contaminated with a fungus, and that the colonies of staphylococci immediately surrounding the fungus had been destroyed, whereas other staphylococci colonies farther away were normal, famously remarking "That's funny" Fleming showed the contaminated culture tohis former assistant Merlin Price, who reminded him, "That's how you discovered lysozyme." Fleming grew the mould in a pure culture and found that it produced a substance that killed a number of disease-causing bacteria. He identified the mould as being from the Penicillium genus, and, after some months of calling it "mould juice", named the substance it released penicillin on 7 March 1929Gram-positive pathogens that cause scarlet fever, pneumonia, meningitis and diphtheria, but not typhoid fever or paratyphoid fever, which are caused by Gram-negative bacteria, for which he was seeking a cure at the time. It also affected Neisseria gonorrhoeae, which causes gonorrhoea although this bacterium is Gram-negative.
Fleming published his discovery in 1929, in the British Journal ofExperimental Pathology, but little attention was paid to his article. Fleming continued his investigations, but found that cultivating penicillium was quite difficult, and that after having grown the mould, it was even more difficult to isolate the antibiotic agent.
His discovery of penicillin had changed the world of modern medicine by introducing the age of useful antibiotics; penicillin has saved, andis still saving, millions of people around the world.
The laboratory at St Mary's Hospital where Fleming discovered penicillin is home to the Fleming Museum, a popular London attraction.
Dead: On 11 March 1955, Fleming died at his home in London of a heart attack. He was buried in St Paul's Cathedral.
Alexander Fleming nació en Lochfield rural, en East Ayrshire,Escocia, el 6 de agosto de 1881. Sus padres, Hugh y Grace eran agricultores, y Alejandro fue uno de sus cuatro hijos. También tuvo cuatro medio hermanos que eran los hijos sobrevivientes de su padre el primer matrimonio de Hugh. Asistió a la Escuela de Moor Louden, la Escuela Darvel y Kilmarnock Academia antes de trasladarse a Londres en 1895, donde vivió con su hermano mayor, Thomas Fleming. EnLondres, Fleming terminó su educación básica en el Regent Street Politécnica
Fleming fue miembro del Ejército Territorial, y se desempeñó desde 1900 hasta 1.914 en el London Scottish Regimiento. Entró en el campo de la medicina en 1901, estudiando en la Escuela de Medicina del Hospital St. Mary de la Universidad de Londres. Mientras que en Santa María, ganó la medalla de oro 1908 como estudiante de...
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