RE: [IP] We owe her BIG TIME!!
I enjoyed reading that , I had never heard of her - as accomplished as she
was. Thanks for sharing Jan.
From: email @ redacted
[mailto:email @ redacted] On Behalf Of Jan H.
Sent: Tuesday, June 07, 2011 20:10
To: email @ redacted
Subject: [IP] We owe her BIG TIME!!
Rosalyn S. Yalow
(1921 - 2011)
By Seymour "Sy" Brody
Rosalyn S. Yalow became the second woman to ever win the Nobel Prize in
medicine, 1977. Her achievement was the development of RIA, an application
of nuclear physics in clinical medicine that makes it possible for
scientists to use radiotropic tracers to measure the concentration of
hundreds of pharmacologic and biologic substances in the blood and other
fluids of the human body and in animals and plants. She invented this
technique in 1959 to measure the amount of insulin in the blood of adult
She was born on July 19, 1921, in New York City, of Jewish parents, Clara
and Simon Sussman. She attended the New York City public school system and
in Walton High School she was encouraged by her chemistry teacher to pursue
a career in science. She graduated Hunter College and accepted a teaching
fellowship in physics at the University of Illinois. In 1945, she became the
second woman to receive a Ph.D. degree in physics from Illinois.
She met A. Aaron Yalow, a fellow physics student who was the son of a rabbi
and they were married on June 6, 1943. They returned to New York where she
accepted a lecturer's post in physics, which she held until 1950. During
this period, they had two children, Benjamin and Elanna.
After World War II, the Veterans Administration was interested in doing
research to explore the possible use of radioactive substances in the
diagnosis of treatment and disease. The VA Hospital in the Bronx was chosen
as one of the sites where research would be conducted. Dr. Yalow, who was a
consultant in this facility, was hired to work on nuclear physics in 1947.
In 1950, she was appointed physicist and assistant chief of the hospital's
Dr Yalow was appointed to higher and more responsible positions at the VA
Hospital during the years. In 1976, she became the first woman to win the
Albert Lasker Prize for Basic Medical Research. During the years, Dr. Yalow
was recognized for her achievements with numerous prestigious awards from
organizations, societies, universities, etc.
Dr. Rosalyn Yalow was always aware of her role as a woman and as a Jew.
After she received the Nobel Prize, the "Ladies Home Journal" wanted her to
receive a special woman's award. She politely refused the offer, which she
considered to be as a "ghetto" citation given her because she was a
brilliant woman, not a brilliant scientist.
During her hectic life as a scientist and as the wife and mother of a
family, she managed to host a five-part dramatic series on the life of
Madame Curie, for the Public Broadcasting Service in 1976. She has put in
long hours each week at the VA. Hospital and then come home to her kosher
kitchen to prepare meals for her family. Dr. Yalow displayed energy and
enthusiasm at all times for work and family.
Dr. Rosalyn Yalow was a beacon and guide for young women in achieving
position and recognition in life. She demonstrated through her life that it
is possible for a woman to be an outstanding professional as well as have a
good family in their lifetime.
Dr. Yalow died on May 30, 2011, at age 89.
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