Welcome to the CJU website » LOG IN


A meaningful legacy: urologists as Nobel Prize laureates
The Canadian Journal of Urology
Feb  2003 (Vol.  10, Issue  1, Pages( 1737 - 1742)


Text-Size + 


    To review the careers of two urologists among Nobel Prize-winners in medicine, W. Forssmann and C. H.Huggins, and the significance of their contributions.


    Investigation was performed based on analysis of collected findings from the biographies of laureates, their scientific publications and the Nobel archive database.


    Review revealed that of the 175 scientists and physicians who received the Nobel Prize, just over one half (94) held an MD degree while the remainder were PhD's or other degrees. Of the 94 MD-degreed physicians nine (9.4%) were surgeons. Two of these laureates were urologists- Drs. Werner Forssmann and Charles B. Huggins, who were awarded the Nobel Prize in 1956 and 1966, respectively. Although Werner Forssmann worked as a urologist for most of his career, early in his surgical training he invented procedures for cardiac catheterization and performed the first procedures on himself in 1929. Charles Huggins identified the role of androgens in prostate cancer progression in 1940, and thus established the principles of hormonal suppressive therapy for advanced disease.


    The distinguished accomplishments of these two great urologists exemplify the highest level of excellence in science for the entire surgical and urological community. Furthermore, today's breakthroughs in molecular medicine represent an extremely appealing challenge for the new generation of scientists and clinicians.