Lab Canada

2012 inductees named to Medical Hall of Fame

London, ON – The Canadian Medical Hall of Fame has announced its 2012 inductees, who are:

– Dr John James Macleod (1876-1935)
– Terry Fox (1958-1981)
– Dr Armand Frappier (1904-1991)
– Dr Peter Macklem (1931-2011)
– Dr John Dirks
– Dr F Clarke Fraser
– Dr Lap-Chee Tsui

Dr John James Rickard (JJR) Macleod is recognized for collaborating in one of the most important breakthroughs in medicine. Known internationally at the time for his research in carbohydrate metabolism and physiology, Dr Macleod was recruited to the University of Toronto where he directed the research that led to the discovery and clinical use of insulin as an effective therapy for diabetes. Following the breakthrough in 1922, Dr Macleod shared the 1923 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine with Dr Fredrick Banting.

Terry Fox’s run to raise money for cancer research in 1980 is an enduring symbol of the commitment and determination of one individual to find a cure – shared now by millions of people who participate in Terry Fox events all over the world. Today, the Foundation in his name has raised hundreds of millions of dollars. Terry’s father and brother, Rolly and Darrell, will accept the honour at the induction ceremony in Toronto in March.

Dr Armand Frappier was a driving force in the deadly battle against tuberculosis. In the 1930s, he became an advocate for full-scale, anti-tuberculosis vaccinations in North America, and founded the first institution dedicated to medical research in Quebec now known as the INRS-Institut Armand-Frappier. During the polio epidemic of the 1950s, Dr Frappier introduced the Salk vaccine. He is also recognized for his work in the development of freeze-drying human serum, in collaboration with the Department of National Defence and the Canadian Red Cross during WWII.

One of Canada’s greatest pulmonary physicians, clinician-scientists and original thinkers, Dr Peter T Macklem forever changed the face of respiratory medicine by pioneering the study of small airway physiology and identifying the early pulmonary damage done by smoking. Born in the Thousand Islands region of Ontario, he is recognized worldwide as a giant of respiratory medicine.

Dr John Dirks of Toronto has had a long and distinguished career working in the field of kidney disease. But he is perhaps best known for transforming the Gairdner Foundation International Awards, often referred to as ‘Canada’s Nobel Prizes’, into one of the most prestigious awards program for medical research in the world.

Raised in Nova Scotia, Dr F Clarke Fraser is an iconic figure in Canadian medicine. He spanned the fields of science and medicine, and was one of the creators of the discipline of medical genetics in North America. He founded the first Canadian medical genetics department in a paediatric hospital, aptly named the F Clarke Fraser Clinical Genetics Centre at McGill University, in 1995. He also laid the foundations in the field of genetic counselling, which has enhanced the lives of patients worldwide.

Dr Lap-Chee Tsui made what is described as the most significant breakthrough in human genetics in 50 years, namely the discovery of the cystic fibrosis gene. Born in Shanghai, China, and coming to the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto in the early 80s, Dr Tsui has made extraordinary contributions to science through his discoveries and is a leader in developing the field of genomics in Canada and internationally.

“These individuals have truly made a difference in the lives of Canadians, and indeed, people around the world. They have blazed trails, inspired others to follow, and extended the boundaries of medical knowledge and health care,” said Dr Cecil Rorabeck, Board Chair of the Hall of Fame. “We are in their debt, and we honour them for their great service to humankind.”

The 2012 Induction Ceremony, presented by BMO Harris Private Banking, will be held for the first time in Toronto on March 21.