Paul Erhlich, German immunologist

Paul Erhlich, German immunologist


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Paul Ehrlich. Paul Ehrlich (1854-1915), German immunologist, pictured in his laboratory. Ehrlich worked with aniline dyes, developing methods to stain white blood cells and discovered a new variety called 'mast cells'. Ehrlich also studied diseases, helping to develop the diphtheria anti- toxin in 1892. He investigated synthetic chemicals which selectively destroy pathogenic organisms in the body. He discovered that the dye Trypan Red was effective against the parasites which cause trypanosomiasis (sleeping sickness) and used an arsenic compound called 'salvarsan' against syphilis. This was the beginning of chemotherapy. He shared a Nobel Prize for medicine in 1908.

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