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Sir Gustav Nossal
, 2004

by Dean Home

oil on board (support: 105.0 cm x 80.0 cm)

Sir Gustav Nossal AC CBE (b. 1931) is a medical scientist. Born in Austria, he emigrated with his family in 1939. He began his career in 1955 at Melbourne's Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research under immunologist Sir Macfarlane Burnet. Ten years later he succeeded Burnet as Director of the Institute. Under his 31-year leadership its research broadened to include cancer, multiple sclerosis, malaria and organ transplants. During much of this period Nossal was also Professor of Medical Biology at the University of Melbourne; from 1994 to 1998 he was President of the Australian Academy of Science. Since 1990 he has chaired the body advising the World Health Organisation on vaccination and immunisation, assisted the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and has become a principal partner of Foursight Associates, which promotes and facilitates the transformation of Australian medical research into commercially viable ventures. Knighted in 1977 for his work in immunology, Nossal became a Companion of the Order of Australia in 1989, the Australian of the Year in 2000. He is also a Fellow of the Royal Society of London, a Foreign Associate of the US National Academy of Sciences, and Member of French Academie des Sciences.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery, Canberra
Purchased with funds provided by Karen McLeod Adair and Antony Adair 2004
Accession number: 2004.21