American Philosophical Society
Member History

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1Name:  Dr. Rolf M. Zinkernagel
 Institution:  Institute of Experimental Immunology, University of Zurich
 Year Elected:  2001
 Class:  2. Biological Sciences
 Subdivision:  209. Neurobiology
 Residency:  International
 Living? :   Living
 Birth Date:  1944
Rolf Zinkernagel received an M.D. in 1968 from the University of Basel and a Ph.D. in 1975 from the Australian National University. He was a professor in the Department of Pathology at the Scripps Clinic and Research Foundation (1976-79) and a professor at the University Hospital in Zurich (1979-88). He has been a full professor and director of the Institute of Experimental Immunology at the University of Zurich since 1992. Rolf Zinkernagel elucidated the biologic significance of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) restricted adaptive immune response. This kind of response provides protection from a panoply of viruses, bacteria, fungi and protozoa that have no or low cytotoxicity and, coincidentally, is the fundamental barrier to in-species tissue and organ transplantation (e.g. human to human organ and bone marrow transplantation). Dr. Zinkernagel was awarded the Lasker Award in 1995. In 1996 he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Medicine "for discoveries concerning the specificity of the cell mediated immune defense." He was elected as an international fellow of the Royal Society and an international member of the American Philosophical Society in 2001.
Election Year
2001 (1)