American Philosophical Society
Member History

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Resident (1)
2. Biological Sciences[X]
204. Medicine, Surgery, Pathology and Immunology[X]
1Name:  Dr. Peter Carey Nowell
 Institution:  University of Pennsylvania
 Year Elected:  1993
 Class:  2. Biological Sciences
 Subdivision:  204. Medicine, Surgery, Pathology and Immunology
 Residency:  Resident
 Living? :   Deceased
 Birth Date:  1928
 Death Date:  December 26, 2016
A professor of pathology at the University of Pennsylvania from 1964 to his retirement in 2008, Peter Carey Nowell was a creative and distinguished scholar who was internationally recognized for discovery of the Philadelphia chromosome in granulocytic leukemia - the first constant chromosomal abnormality specifically associated with any form of cancer. This discovery led to the founding of an entirely new field of research: cancer cytogenetics. Some of Dr. Nowell's other important medical discoveries are less well known. He was the first to demonstrate that bone marrow transplantation could save lethally irradiated animals, and he was also the first to show that certain sugar-containing plant products (lectins) caused white blood cells to divide, a property that has been widely used in medical research. He also proposed a widely-accepted theory to explain the evolution of malignancy among the cells of tumors. With hundreds of publications to his credit, including more than a few "citation classics," Dr. Nowell was an academic leader who has served as both director of the cancer center and chairman of pathology at the University of Pennsylvania. In 1952 he received his M.D. from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, and he has worked there throughout his career. A past president of the American Society for Experimental Pathology, Dr. Nowell was also a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the recipient of awards such as the Leukemia Society of America's Robert de Villiers Award (1987), the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center's Fred W. Stewart Award (1989), and the Franklin Institute's Benjamin Franklin Medal in Life Science (2009). Peter Nowell died December 26, 2016, at age 88.
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