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Biographical entry Hetzel, Basil Stuart (1922 - )

London, England
Medical Research


During his time as Chief of the CSIRO Division of Human Nutrition (1975-1985), Dr Basil Stuart Hetzel conducted pioneering research that established the link between iodine deficiency and impeded brain development in foetal animals and humans. In 1986 he left the CSIRO to establish the International Council for Control of Iodine Deficiency Disorders, of which he was Executive Director. Hetzel is one of the National Trust's Living Treasures.



Education - Bachelor of Medicine, University of Adelaide
1951 - 1954
Education - Fulbright Research Scholarship, New York
1956 - 1958
Career position - Michell Professor of Medicine, University of Adelaide
1968 - 1975
Career position - Foundation Professor of Social and Preventive Medicine, Monash University
1975 - 1985
Career position - Chief of CSIRO's Division of Human Nutrition
1986 - 1995
Career position - Founder and Executive Director of the International Council for Control of Iodine Deficiency Disorders
1991 -
Award - Fellow, Nutrition Society of Australia
Award - Honorary Bragg Member, Royal Institution of Australia

Published resources


  • Hetzel, Basil S., Chance and Commitment: Memoirs of a Medical Scientist (Kent Town, S.A.: Wakefield Press, 2005), 301 pp. Details

Book Sections

Journal Articles

  • Brener, Mandy, 'Infectious personalities: the public health legacy of three Australian doctors in Papua New Guinea', Health and History, 17 (1) (2015), 73.96. Details
  • Pincock, Stephen, 'Basil Hetzel: vanquishing iodine deficiency disorders', The Lancet, 381 (9869) (2013), 717. Details

Newspaper Articles

  • McNeil, John, Abramson, Michael, Fisher, Jane, Harrison, Sharon and Hetzel, Robert, 'Basil Hetzel 1922 - 2017', Sydney Morning Herald, 2017 (6 March) (2017). Details


Rebecca Rigby