Lives of the fellows

Sol Sherry

b.8 December 1916 d.28 January 1993
BA NYU(1935) MD(1939) FRCP(1980)

Sol Sherry’s long career was characterized by a dedication to medical research and to the education of young physicians. He was born and educated in New York City, eventually earning his MD degree at New York University School of Medicine in 1939. He returned to the city after serving as a flight surgeon in the US Air Force during the Second World War, and began working under William S Tillett at NYU. It was here that he began his initial research work, investigating the plasminogen/fibrinolytic system in human blood, outlining the first generation fibrinolytic enzymes, streptokinase and urokinase. These findings led initially to treatments for empyema and pulmonary embolism and later to thrombus dissolving treatments for acute myocardial infraction (AMI). Although therapies for AMI have since evolved, Sherry was one of the key founders of the concept that AMI was associated with and caused by vascular pathology that could be medically manipulated. His other research work included major contributions to the use of anticoagulants and antiplatelet agents.

As his academic career progressed he moved to St Louis in 1954 as associate professor at Washington University School of Medicine, where in time he became co-chairman of the department of internal medicine. He was appointed chairman of medicine at Temple in 1969. During his 15 year tenure the department was greatly strengthened. A three year tenure as dean completed his academic career.

He accrued many honours during his career, including master of the American College of Physicians, the naming of the Sol Sherry thrombosis research centre at Temple and an endowed chair funded entirely by his past residents and fellows. Sol Sherry died of pancreatic cancer at Temple University Hospital in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Ronald Rubin

(Volume X, page 448)

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