Lives of the fellows

Claude Ernest Dolman

b.23 May 1906 d.15 December 1994
MB BS London(1929) PhD DPH MRCP FRCP(1947) FRSC(1947) FRCPC(1947)

Claude Ernest Dolman was a Canadian microbiologist and academic. Born in Porthleven, Cornwall, he studied medicine at London University and St Mary’s Hospital Medical School. At St Mary’s he was taught by Sir Almroth Wright [Munk’s Roll, Vol.V, p.460] and Sir Alexander Fleming [Munk’s Roll, Vol.V, p.132]. Fleming encouraged him to begin research into the Staphylococcus bacteria. He obtained the diploma in public health and the MRCP.

In 1931 he moved to Canada and became a research assistant and clinical associate in the Connaught Laboratories at Toronto University. Four years later he moved to Vancouver and was appointed director of the division of laboratories of the department of health of British Columbia, staying in post until 1956. At the University of British Columbia (UBC) he was professor and head of the department of bacteriology and preventive medicine from 1936 to 1951 and then head of its successor, the department of bacteriology and immunology, until 1965. He was also acting head of the department of nursing from 1933 to 1943, and head of that department from 1943 to 1951. At UBC he was appointed professor emeritus in 1971.

During his career he published over 100 scientific papers, including 36 to the Canadian journal of public health of which journal he was on the editorial board for 20 years from 1939. They covered a wide range of topics such as brucellosis, gonorrhoea, typhoid fever, cholera vaccine, diphtheria, influenza and rat-bite fever. Dolman had an international reputation for his work on botulism and was responsible for the epidemiologically significant hypothesis that Clostridium botulinum type E is not a marine organism but of terrestrial origin.

A fellow of the Royal Society of Canada since 1947, he was its president in 1969. He was also president of the Canadian Association of Medical Bacteriologists from 1964 to 1966. In 1973 he was awarded honorary membership of the Canadian Public Health Association.

RCP editor

[Wikipedia - accessed 18 March 2015; CPHA profiles in public health – accessed 18 March 2015; Claude Dolman fonds - accessed 18 March 2015]

(Volume XII, page web)

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