Bernard Beryl Brodie Edit Profile
Bachelor of Science, McGill University, 1931. Doctor of Philosophy, New York University, 1935. Honorary Doctor of Science, University Paris, France, 1963.
Honorary Doctor of Science, Philadelphia College Pharmacy and Science, 1965. Honorary Doctor of Science, University Barcelona, 1967. Honorary Doctor of Science, New York Medical College, 1970.
Honorary Doctor of Science, University Louvain, Belgium, 1971. Honorary Doctor of Science, University Arizona, 1985. Doctor of Medicine (honorary), Karolinska Institute, 1968.
Doctor of Medicine (honorary), University Cagliari, Italy, 1973.
He was a major figure in the field of drug metabolism, the study of how drugs interact in the body and how they are absorbed. After his graduation from N.Y.U., he was an associate professor there until 1950, when he joined the National Institutes of Health. He headed the pharmacology laboratory there until his retirement in 1970 but remained active as a senior consultant with Hoffmann-LaRoche laboratories in Nutley, New Jersey and as a professor of pharmacology at Pennsylvania State University.
His most significant discovery was that animal and human responses to drugs do not differ significantly. This pioneered the concept that blood drug levels must guide therapeutic dosages and he established the basis for the chemotherapy of malaria. Together with Julius Axelrod, he discovered that acetanilide and phenacetin both metabolize to paracetamol.
Unlike its precursors, paracetamol does not cause methemoglobinemia in humans. Brodie also did research on anesthetic and hypnotic drugs and discovered that procainamide was effective in treating patients with severe irregularities in heart rhythm. He also pioneered a drug therapy for gout.
Dr. Brodie was the first scientist to determine how the neurohormones, serotonin and norepinephrine, affect the functioning of the brain, thereby leading to an understanding of how anti-psychotic drugs could be used effectively in the treatment of mental and emotional disorders. He also proposed a new line of attack on schizophrenia, leading to studies of how nerve impulses in the brain are transmitted along particular pathways of the nerve cells. His scientific career was the basis of a recent popular biography, Apprentice to Genius by Robert Kanigel, which describes how a group of scientists, headed by Dr. Brodie, made prize-winning breakthroughs in biomedical science over a period of 40 years.
Served with Canadian Army, 1926-1928. Member National Academy of Sciences, Institute Medicine, International Pharmaceutical Society, American College Neuropsychopharmacology (president 1965), American Society Biological Chemists, American Society Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics, Harvey Society, New York, Washington academies science, Royal Society Medicine.
Married Anne Lois Smith, August 30, 1950.
Julius Sturmer Memorial lecturer, 1962. Torald Sollmann award American Pharmacology Society, 1963. Distinguished Achievement award Modern Medicine medical journal, 1964.
Albert Lasker award for basic medical research, 1967. National Medal of Science, 1968. Claude Bernard professor of University Montreal, 1969.
Schmiede-Plakette German Pharmacol. Society, 1969; Oscar B. Hunter Memorial award American Pharmaceutical Society, 1970. Research Achievement award for stimulation research Academy Pharmaceutical Sciences, 1972.
Intrascis. medalist, 1972. Medal for research U. Turku, Finland.