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Biographical entry Anderson, Charlotte Morrison (1915 - 2002)

AM, FRACP, FRCP, FACP

Born
12 March 1915
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Died
15 April 2002
Toorak, Victoria, Australia
Occupation
Paediatric Gastroenterologist

Summary

Charlotte Anderson was an Australian pioneer of paediatric gastroenterology. She developed a clinical research program at the Royal Children's Hospital in Melbourne, where she also established the first cystic fibrosis clinic in Australia (1953) and the hospital's Gastroenterological Research Unit (1962). Her research was wide-reaching and varied, but her major contributions were made in the areas of cystic fibrosis, celiac disease and sugar intolerance: Anderson devised a test to differentiate between cystic fibrosis and celiac disease; introduced the use of inhalation and chest physiotherapy to increase the survival rate of cystic fibrosis patients; discovered that celiac disease was triggered by wheat gluten and that a gluten-free diet could prevent further disease onset and heal the damaged gut; and invented a simple, non-invasive test for diagnosing sugar intolerance in infants.

Details

After completing a science degree and five years of research, Charlotte Morrison Anderson, decided to take up medicine. She graduated with a Bachelor of Medicine from the University of Melbourne in 1945 and was appointed a Resident at the Royal Melbourne Hospital. The following year she moved to Melbourne's Royal Children's Hospital which was the start of her life-long association with the hospital. The hospital's Charlote Anderson Memorial Lecture was named in her honour.

In 1950 Anderson received a fellowship and travelled to the Hospital for Sick Children and the University of Birmingham in England to continue her research into malabsorption problems in children. She returned to Melbourne and to the Children's Hospital in 1953 and established Australia's first cystic fibrosis clinic. In 1962 she set up the hospital's Gastroenterological Research Unit, which she headed for six years.

Charlotte Anderson returned to England and to the University of Birmingham in 1968, remaining there for fourteen years. After her retirement in 1982, she came back to Australia where she worked as an Honorary Consulting Gasteroenterologist at the Princess Margaret Hospital for Children in Western Australia and at the Royal Children's Hospital in Melbourne.

Anderson was a fellow of the national and international paediatric societies, helped establish the Australian Society of Paediatric Research, co-founded the Australian Paediatric Journal (1965), authored numerous scientific publications including the book Paediatric Gastroenterology (Anderson & Burke, 1975), and was appointed a Member in the General Division of the Order of Australia for her service to medicine.

Events

1936
Education - Bachelor of Science with Honours (BSc (Hons)) completed at the University of Melbourne
1936 - 1941
Career position - Research Biochemist at the Baker Medical Research Institute, Alfred Hospital, Victoria
1937
Education - Master of Science (MSc) with Exhibition completed at the University of Melbourne
1945
Education - Bachelor of Medicine (MB) and Bachelor of Surgery (BS) completed at the University of Melbourne
1945 - 1946
Career position - Resident Medical Officer at the Royal Melbourne Hospital
1946 - 1947
Career position - Resident Medical Officer at the Royal Children's Hospital in Melbourne
1948 - 1950
Career position - Medical Registrar at the Clinical Research Unit of the Royal Children's Hospital
1950 - 1951
Career position - Research Fellow at the University of Birmingham, UK
1953 - 1956
Career position - Senior Research Associate at the Clinical Research Unit, Royal Children's Hospital
1955
Education - Doctor of Medicine (MD) completed at the University of Melbourne
1956 - 1959
Career position - First Assistant in Medical Out-patients at the Royal Children's Hospital
1956 - 1961
Career position - First Assistant (to 1959) then Deputy Director of the Clinical Research Unit
1962 - 1967
Career position - Member of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians
1962 - 1968
Career position - Head of the Gastroenterological Research Unit, Royal Children's Hospital Research Foundation in Melbourne
1965 - 1968
Career position - Co-founder of The Australian Paediatric Journal
1967 -
Award - Fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians (FRACP)
1968 - 1980
Career position - Leonard Parsons Professor of Paediatrics and Child Health at the University of Birmingham and Director of the Institute of Child Health, University of Birmingham, UK
1969 - 1971
Career position - Member of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians, London
1971 -
Award - Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians (FRCP), London
1975 -
Award - Fellow of the Australian College of Paediatrics (FACP)
1980 -
Career position - Professor Emeritus in Paediatrics and child Health at the University of Birmingham
1982 - 1990
Career position - Honorary Research Fellow in the Department of Paediatrics and Child Health at the University of Western Australia
1982 - 1990
Career position - Honorary Consulting Gastroenterologist at the Princess Margaret Hospital for Children in Perth
1994 -
Career position - Honorary Consulting Gastroenterologist at the Royal Children's Hospital in Melbourne
1996 -
Award - Honorary Founder Fellow Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, UK
1997
Award - Member of the (General Division) Order of Australia (AM)

Published resources

Encyclopedia of Australian Science Exhibitions

Journal Articles

Online Resources

Annette Alafaci