William Hammon

William McDowall Hammon
DiedSeptember 19, 1989
Seminole, Florida
NationalityUnited States American
Alma materAllegheny College
Harvard Medical School
Known forPolio vaccine pioneer,[1] Tropical diseases
Scientific career
FieldsPhysician, virologist, and epidemiologist
InstitutionsUniversity of California, Berkeley
University of Pittsburgh
Doctoral advisorHans Zinsser

William McDowall Hammon (1904 – September 19, 1989) was an American physician and researcher, best known for his work on poliomyelitis.[2][3] In his early twenties and prior to becoming a research physician, Hammon worked for four years as a medical missionary in the former Belgian Congo. After returning, he received his undergraduate degree from Allegheny College in 1932.[1] Completing his medical training at Harvard Medical School in 1936,[1] Hammon then studied with the bacteriologist Hans Zinsser, receiving a Master of Public Health degree in 1938, and a Doctor of Philosophy degree in 1939.[3] During this period Hammon co-discovered the first vaccine for feline panleucopenia.[4]

Hammon was presented with the Medal of Freedom in 1946 by President Harry Truman.[5]


  1. ^ a b c Fowler G (1989-09-23). "Dr. William Hammon Dies at 85; A Pioneer in Fight Against Polio". New York Times.
  2. ^ "Unsung Hero of the War on Polio" (PDF). University of Pittsburgh Public Health Magazine. 2004. Archived from the original (– Scholar search) on September 11, 2006.
  3. ^ a b Rinaldo CR (2005). "Passive Immunization Against Poliomyelitis: The Hammon Gamma Globulin Field Trials, 1951–1953". American Journal of Public Health. 95 (5): 790–9. doi:10.2105/AJPH.2004.040790. PMC 1449257. PMID 15855454.
  4. ^ Enders JF, Hammon WM (1940). "Active and passive immunization against the virus of malignant pan leucopenia of cats". Proc Soc Exp Biol Med. 48: 194–200. doi:10.3181/00379727-43-11141. S2CID 73135183.
  5. ^ HiBeam Research

Further reading

Media files used on this page

Rod of Asclepius2.svg
Author/Creator: , Licence: CC BY-SA 3.0
Rod of Asclepius
Author/Creator: Viktorvoigt, Licence: CC-BY-SA-3.0
stub icon