Dame Annie Jean Macnamara Bio, Biography, Wiki, Google doodle, Birthday, Career

Dame Annie Jean Macnamara Bio, Biography, Wiki, Google doodle, Birthday, Career:- Dame Annie Jean Macnamara, DBE (1 April 1899 – 13 October 1968) was an Australian medical doctor and scientist, best known for her contributions to children’s health and welfare. She was honored as Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 1935.

ame Jean Macnamara was a medical scientist and Australian doctor whose contributions to the study of polio are particularly relevant today.

As the world awaits a coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine, it can turn to medical crises of the past for consolation that the great thinkers of the sciences usually find a cure.

According to Google, Macnamara “applied her tireless work ethic to better understand and treat various forms of paralysis including polio.” It was her work that helped lead to the development of a polio vaccine in 1955, helping put an end to that scourge.

Google has honored her with a Google Doodle on what would have been her 121st birthday. In 2018, when she was honored in Melbourne, her daughter, Merran Samuel said, “Dame Jean was a humble and shy person, who was driven by a sense of duty and service. Educated on a scholarship, she was one of the first two women residents at the Royal Children’s Hospital.” Dame Annie Jean Macnamara Bio

Who is Dame Annie Jean Macnamara

Dame Annie Jean Macnamara was an Australian medical doctor and scientist, best known for her contributions to children’s health and welfare.

Jean Macnamara Bio, Early life

Annie Jean Macnamara was born on 1 April 1899 to John and Annie Macnamara in Beechworth, Victoria. Her family moved to Melbourne when she was seven.

dame jean macnamara
dame jean macnamara

Jean Macnamara Education

she attended Spring Road State School. She received a scholarship to study at the Presbyterian Ladies’ College. She entered the University of Melbourne at age 17, she graduated M.B. and B.S. in 1922; other notable Australians who also graduated in her class included Kate Isabel Campbell, Lucy Meredith Bryce, Jean Littlejohn, and Frank Macfarlane Burnet.


Following graduation she became a resident medical officer at the Royal Melbourne Hospital. In 1923, Macnamara became a resident doctor at the Royal Children’s Hospital in Melbourne. Hospital authorities had at first been reluctant to employ her on the grounds that it had no toilet facilities for women doctors. During her time at the Children’s Hospital there was a polio outbreak, she and Burnet demonstrated that there was more than one strain of the virus, a fact that would be important in the later development of the Salk vaccine. Between 1925 and 1931 she was a consultant and the medical officer responsible to the Poliomyelitis Committee of Victoria, and between 1930 and 1931 was an honorary adviser on polio to official authorities in New South Wales, South Australia, and Tasmania.

In 1931, she received a Rockefeller Fellowship to travel to England and the United States to study orthopedics. When she returned to Australia in 1934 she married dermatologist Joseph Ivan Connor, and they had two daughters, Joan and Merran. She conducted a successful orthopedic work, and for this contribution was created DBE in 1935. Although she was considered the foremost Australian authority on the treatment of poliomyelitis, she continued to recommend the use of convalescent serum and splinting to immobilize limbs long after these treatments were abandoned in America.

In the 1930s, she encouraged the Australian government to trial the myxoma virus to combat the Australian rabbit plague. Although trials were initially unsuccessful, she lobbied that they are continued, and when the virus became epizootic in 1951, the mosquito vector spread the virus among rabbits, causing the successful reduction of wild rabbit numbers.

Death and legacy

Macnamara died at the age of 69 from cardiovascular disease in 1968.

Seven other Australian medical scientists were commemorated in the issue of a set of four Australian stamps released in 1995. She appears on the 45 cent stamp with fellow University of Melbourne graduate, Frank Macfarlane Burnet. Dame Annie Jean Macnamara Bio

In 2018, the Australian Electoral Commission renamed the federal electoral division of Melbourne Ports to Macnamara in her honour.

A suburb of Canberra was named Macnamara, Australian Capital Territory in commemoration of Jean Macnamara. Macnamara Place, in the Canberra suburb of Chisholm, is also named in her honour.

Awards and honours

  • 1935, Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire

Dame Annie Jean Macnamara Facts

1. Macnamara Was Born in Beechworth, Victoria

Dame Jean Macnamara Google Doodle.
Dame Jean Macnamara Google Doodle

According to Ann G. Smith, writing for the Australian Dictionary of Biography, Macnamara was born in 1899 in Beechworth, Victoria.

Her parents were “Victorian-born.” Dad was a clerk of courts named John Macnamara, and mom was Annie. According to Smith, Macnamara’s parents came from different religious backgrounds. Her father was Catholic, and her mother Presbyterian. She was influenced by both but raised in her mother’s religion.

In 1907, Macnamara’s family moved to Melbourne. She won a scholarship to Presbyterian Ladies’ College. She edited the magazine there and her determination and “seriousness of purpose” grew during times of war. She attended the University of Melbourne eventually becoming a “resident medical officer” at a Melbourne Hospital, wrote Smith.

2. A Polio Epidemic Struck Melbourne & the Illness Became Macnamara’s Life Work

Dr. Dame Jean Macnamara is a world-renowned medical scientist. Her work is known to contribute to the development of the #polio vaccine in 1955. #WomeninSTEM #Vaccine

Macnamara’s graduation from medical school in 1925 coincided with a polio epidemic in Melbourne, according to Google. She was “consultant and medical officer to the Poliomyelitis Committee of Victoria,” according to Polio Place. Dame Annie Jean Macnamara Bio

As a result, she began focusing her research on polio, especially because it was a problem for children. In 1931, she, and later Nobel Prize winner Sir Macfarlane Burnet, identified more than one strain of poliovirus. This helped pave the way for a vaccine 25 years later, Google reports.

She spent the rest of her life’s work helping children and other polio survivors find treatment and rehab, according to Google.

3. Macnamara Also Helped the Disabled & Invented Medical Devices

dame jean mcnamara
dame jean mcnamara

Macnamara’s work wasn’t only confined to the world of polio. According to Polio Place, she “advocated the necessity for adequate aftercare of disabled persons” and ordered the first Australian artificial respirator.

The site says that she also was an innovator in the areas of “splinting and rehabilitation,” helping paralyzed patients recover. She came up with “ingenious restraining devices,” the site says. According to the National Library of Australia, “She established surgery in Spring Street, a clinic at Carlton and also conducted country clinics. She recommended the first center for spastic children, which opened at the Children’s Hospital in 1940. She was recognized as a world authority on infantile paralysis.”

She was married to a dermatologist Joseph Ivan Connor and had two children with him.

4. She Was Interested in a Way to Eradicate Rabbits in Australia

Google is honoring Dame Jean McNamara today. She was born on April 1, 1899. The electorate of Melbourne Ports was renamed McNamara in time for last year’s election. She promoted the myxoma virus for controlling feral rabbits. Dame Annie Jean Macnamara Bio

dame jean mcnamara 121st birthday
dame jean mcnamara 121st birthday

One controversial aspect of Macnamara’s career: She was interested in eradicating rabbits, considered “pests.”

According to the National Library of Australia, she had come to America in 1933 and felt that “myxomatosis could be used to eradicate rabbits in Australia.”

It didn’t work at first, but she continued to make the point and eventually the government in Australia agreed to use myxomatosis “to destroy the rabbit pest,” the library bio reports. According to Rabbit.org, “Myxomatosis is a virus. Wild rabbits can carry Myxomatosis, but do not become sick. Myxomatosis is fatal to domestic (pet) rabbits with a 99% mortality rate, and there is no treatment.”

5. Macnamara Died in 1968

On this day, April 1st was when Dame Jean Macnamara was born.#rememberingwomen#awesomewomenhttps://g.co/kgs/LwPTo8 Jean MacnamaraDame Annie Jean Macnamara, DBE was an Australian medical doctor and scientist, best known for her contributions to children’s health and welfare. She was honored as Dame Commander of the Order of the…google.com.au12:46 PM – Apr 1, 2020Twitter Ads info and privacySee Faemoonxx’s other Tweets

Macnamara died in 1968 in her South Yarra home, according to her obit.

Her husband died before her in 1956.

“In 1935 she was made a Dame Commander and in 1966 she became the first woman to be awarded an honorary doctorate of laws at Melbourne University,” the obit reads. Dame Annie Jean Macnamara Bio

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