20th century, Science

Nobel Laureate Rita Levi-Montalcini: the discovery of Nerve Growth Factor

By Pandora Dewan Rita Levi-Montalcini was jointly awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, with her colleague Stanley Cohen, for their discovery of Nerve Growth Factor (NGF) in 1986. This protein was the first described growth factor, a term for the biological mediators involved in the regulation of cell growth, differentiation, survival, and function.… Continue reading Nobel Laureate Rita Levi-Montalcini: the discovery of Nerve Growth Factor

20th century, Science

Alice Ball and the Fight against Leprosy

By Ellen Pasternack. Leprosy, also known as Hansen’s disease, has always carried a lot of stigma. Viewed as lost causes at best, and dangerous disease spreaders at worst, sufferers have long been treated as social pariahs. With a name coming from the Greek λέπρα, meaning ‘a disease that makes the skin scaly’ due to the… Continue reading Alice Ball and the Fight against Leprosy

18th century, Science

Labour Pains: Elizabeth Nihell and the Struggle to Champion Female Midwifery

by Frankee Bryant Concerns about the medicalization of childbirth and struggles to maintain ‘normality’ in labour have been at the forefront of debate within the discipline of midwifery since the 1980s. The achievements of modern medicine, with their undeniable benefits, have given rise to new challenges for midwives trying to maintain normality and prevent unnecessary… Continue reading Labour Pains: Elizabeth Nihell and the Struggle to Champion Female Midwifery

Medieval, Science

Trota di Ruggiero: The Lady of Salerno Restored

By Kate Manns Pre-medieval texts and ancient manuscripts provided reference for early physicians and therapists, detailing discoveries from anatomy to diagnosis and treatment. For nearly five hundred years, The Trotulawas the only truly comprehensive compendium of female and paediatric medicine in this genre. Believed to be written in the early twelfth century; mystery and controversy… Continue reading Trota di Ruggiero: The Lady of Salerno Restored

Medieval, Science

Hildegard of Bingen

By Sophie Johnston There has been a resurgence of interest in the figure of Hildegard of Bingen, particularly in female religious circles. But despite increased knowledge of her ecstatic religious visions and contribution to medieval music, few are aware that Hildegard also wrote extensively on the subjects of medicine and natural science. These ‘scientific’ works… Continue reading Hildegard of Bingen