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The power of partnerships: the Liverpool school of butterfly and medical genetics

  • DORIS T. ZALLEN (a1)

From the 1950s to the 1970s, a group of physician–researchers forming the ‘Liverpool school’ made groundbreaking contributions in such diverse areas as the genetics of Lepidoptera and human medical genetics. The success of this group can be attributed to the several different, but interconnected, research partnerships that Liverpool physician Cyril Clarke established with Philip Sheppard, Victor McKusick at Johns Hopkins University, the Nuffield Foundation, and his wife Féo. Despite its notable successes, among them the discovery of the method to prevent Rhesus haemolytic disease of the newborn, the Liverpool School began to lose prominence in the mid-1970s, just as the field of medical genetics that it had helped pioneer began to grow. This paper explores the role of partnerships in making possible the Liverpool school's scientific and medical achievements, and also in contributing to its decline.

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The British Journal for the History of Science
  • ISSN: 0007-0874
  • EISSN: 1474-001X
  • URL: /core/journals/british-journal-for-the-history-of-science
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