Dr. George Karoly Radda (GB) - ÁOK, 2001. június 2.

Dr. George Karoly Radda, a Medical Research Council (Nagy Britannia) elnökének díszdoktori avatása a Debreceni Egyetemen 2001. június 2.


Professor George Karoly Radda was a 20-year-old chemistry student in Budapest when the crushed Hungarian uprising prompted him to leave Hungary together with his sister and younger brother. He was offered an opportunity to go to Oxford in England and having arrived there in December of 1956, forty years later he rose to become Head of one of Britain’s leading research bodies the Medical Research Council, a position he still holds with the title of Chief Executive.

In Oxford he was interviewed for a University place by the Head of chemistry at Merton College who spoke no Hungarian and Radda had no English. So the pair communicated using the periodic table as an intermediary. He was admitted to Oxford to read for a degree in Chemistry and heaving learned English in two months he gained a first class degree two years later. He went on to do a Doctorate (PhD) in physical organic chemistry but towards the end of this period he found that his interests were moving more towards biochemistry. He arranged to spend a postdoctoral period in Berkeley, California to work with Melvin Calvin, who was just awarded the Nobel Prize for his pioneering work on the reactions involved in photosynthesis in green plants.

A year later in 1963 he returned to Oxford as a lecturer and tutor and began his scientific carrier by pioneering work using some of the techniques of physical chemistry (fluorescent probes) to study structural changes, which regulate the activity of proteins and biological membranes. For this work he received his first major accelerate, the Colworth medal of the Biochemical Society, awarded for the most outstanding work undertaken by a British biochemist under the age of 35.

The next important change in the direction of his research occurred in the early 1970s when he pioneered the application of nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (NMR) to the study of complex biological systems and later medical problems. The first report of a clinical application appeared in 1981 when his group studied a patient’s muscle metabolism in a rare condition with an enzyme defect. Rather curiously the enzyme that was defective in the patient turned out to be the same one that he studied in solution in the 1960s. The enzyme called phosphorylase was also intensively studied in Debrecen.

These developments led to the setting up of the first clinical magnetic resonance spectroscopy unit in the world and Radda’s appointment to the newly established British Heart Foundation Chair of Molecular Cardiology at Oxford.

Among the honours he received were the Fellowship of the Royal Society in 1980, The Feldberg Prize in 1982, the CIBA Medal of the Biochemical Society in 1983, the Buchanan Medal of the Royal Society in 1987 and the Rank Prize in Nutrition in 1991. He is Honorary Fellow of the American Heart Association, the Royal College of Physicians and the Royal College of Radiology in London. He received the CBE (Commander of the British Empire) in the Queen’s Birthday Honours in 1993 and a Knighthood in June of last year for his services to Medical Sciences.

Frissítés dátuma: 2017.08.15.

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