John Carew Eccles

John Carew Eccles

Australian physiologist
Date of Birth: 27.01.1903
Country: Australia

  1. Biography of John Carew Eccles
  2. Education and Early Career
  3. Professional Career
  4. John Carew Eccles passed away in Contra, Switzerland on May 2, 1997.

Biography of John Carew Eccles

John Carew Eccles (1903–1997) was an Australian physiologist who was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1963 for his studies on the mechanisms of excitation and inhibition in neurons. He was born on January 27, 1903 in Melbourne, Australia.

Education and Early Career

Eccles completed his education at the University of Melbourne in 1925. He then pursued further studies at the University of Oxford in England, where he worked in the laboratory of Charles Scott Sherrington from 1928 to 1931. Following this, Eccles taught at the University of Oxford from 1931 to 1937.

Professional Career

In 1937, Eccles returned to Australia and became the head of the Institute of Pathology in Sydney. From 1944 to 1951, he served as a professor of physiology at the University of Otago in New Zealand. He then became a professor at the Australian National University in Canberra from 1951 to 1966. Later in his career, Eccles worked at the Institute for Biomedical Research in Chicago and the New York University. He moved to Switzerland in 1975, where he resided until his death.

Contributions to Electrophysiology and Central Nervous System Physiology

Eccles is best known for his research in the field of electrophysiology and central nervous system physiology. He was one of the first scientists to study the mechanism of nerve impulse transmission through synapses. He discovered that the sign of the electrical potential changes to the opposite polarity during the transmission of a nerve impulse at the synapse. Eccles also determined the electrophysiological characteristics of excitatory and inhibitory postsynaptic potentials. He made significant contributions to the understanding of presynaptic inhibition and proposed the existence of inhibitory interneurons. Additionally, he investigated the effects of various chemical substances on synaptic transmission. Many of Eccles' research findings are described in his book "Physiology of Synapses" (1963).

John Carew Eccles passed away in Contra, Switzerland on May 2, 1997.