John James Rickard Macleod

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Mary McWalter


John James Rickard Macleod was born at Cluny, near Dunkeld, Perthshire, Scottland on September 6th, 1876.  He obtained his medical degree with honours from the University of Aberdeen in 1898 and began his career at the Institute for Physiology at the University of Leipzig.  In the following years, Macleod held positions at the London Hospital Medical School, the Western Reserve University at Cleveland, Ohio, McGill University, and, beginning in 1918, the University of Toronto.  Here, he worked as Professor of Physiology and Director of the Physiological Laboratory from 1918 ri 1928 and was Associate Dean of the Faculty of Medicine from 1920 until 1928.  He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Medicine with Dr. Banting for his part in the discovery of insulin in 1923. MacLeod resigned the Chair of Physiology in 1928. Following his work at U of T, Macleod was appointed Regius Professor of Physiology at the University of Aberdeen and Consultant Physiologist to the Rowett Institute for Animal Nutrition. 

Macleod is best known for his involvement in the discovery of insulin and joint Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine with Frederick Grant Banting, as well as his extensive work on carbohydrate metabolism.  Prior to the discovery, Macleod had published 37 articles on carbohydrate metabolism and 12 on experimentally produced glycosuria.  In addition, he wrote 11 books and monographs, which included:Physiology and Biochemistry of Modern Medicine (1920); Diabetes: Its Pathological Physiology (1925);Carbohydrate Metabolism and Insulin (1926); Fuel of Life (1928).

John J.R. Macleod was married to Mary McWalter.  In his spare time, Macleod enjoyed gold, gardening, and the arts, with a keen interest in painting.  He died on March 16, 1935.

The University of Toronto commemorated MacLeod's contributions to medicine and the faculty by using his namesake for the MacLeod Auditorium, located at the North East entrance of the Medical Sciences Building at 27 King's College Cir, Toronto.

Career Achievements

·        Anderson Travelling Fellowship – 1898

·        McKinnon Research Studentship of the Royal Society – 1902

·        Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine - 1923



 UTARMS Image Database. A1978-0041/014(35).

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