Charles Armstrong

National Institutes of Health

September 25, 1886 - June 22, 1967

Scientific Discipline: Microbial Biology
Membership Type:
Member (elected 1944)

Physician Charles Armstrong spent much of his career studying virology, particularly diseases that spread quickly among a population. In 1934 he isolated and named an unknown virus, Lymphocytic choriomeningitis. He also conducted research on the poliovirus. He was able to adapt and transmit a human strain of the virus between two mice. Through this experiment he was able to study the effects of infection and immune response. His research with the poliovirus paved the way for the creation of a vaccine.

Armstrong graduated from Mount Union College in 1910, earning his BS degree. He then attended The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and earned his MD in 1915. After graduating, he interned at the Yale–New Haven Hospital for a year. In 1916 he was called to serve in the U.S. Public Health Service, and he was a medical officer on a United States Coast Guard cutter until 1918. He then worked as an epidemiological aide to the Ohio State Department of Health from 1919 to 1921. In 1921 he moved to the National Institutes of Health, where he remained until his retirement in 1963.

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