David Semple bigraphy, stories - British immunologist

David Semple : biography

6 April 1856 - 7 January 1937

Lieutenant-Colonel Sir David Semple MD (1856 – 1937) was a British Army officer who founded the Pasteur Institute at Kasauli in the Indian state of Himachal Pradesh. The institute later came to be known as the Central Research Institute (CRI).

In 1911 he developed a nerve-tissue based rabies vaccine from the brains of sheep first made rabid and then killed. The `Semple' vaccine however is known to have side-effects such as paralysis with high risk of other diseases, being just a crude form of churned brain-tissue. It needs administration around the stomach in a series of very painful injections administered over a period of seven to 14 days, a course that many do not complete. Moreover, it is not reliable and the World Health Organization (WHO) has been advocating its total disuse since 1993. (WHO literature )

He was given a knighthood in 1911, and is buried in Hanwell Cemetery.

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