Google doodle pays tribute to Karl Landsteiner on his 148th birth anniversary

Jun 14, 2016, 08:48 IST | midday online correspondent

Google commemorates Karl Landsteiner, an Austrian and American biologist and physician, who discovered the existence of blood types A, B, AB and O in 1900, on his 148th birth anniversary.

Google doodle pays tribute to Karl Landsteiner on his 148th birth anniversary
The doodle

The doodle depicts an animated caricature of Landsteiner with blinking eyes standing next to a table containing a microscope, four test tubes with blood from various groups. The blood group names have namely O, A, B and AB appear above each test tube with a swirling blood vessel below them.

The Google logo in grey letters is in the background with the second O designed rather largely. It is encompassed by a ornate frame.

Apart from discovering blood types Landsteiner also found that people of the same or compatible types can receive transfusions from one another.

Karl Landsteiner's discoveries have helped save millions of lives. But that's not all. Along with Austrian physician Erwin Popper and Romanian physician and microbiologist Constantin Levaditi, Karl Landsteiner is also credited with laying the groundwork that led to the discovery of the polio virus in 1909, which was the first step towards developing a treatment for the disease which affected millions of children worldwide.

Karl Landsteiner and Alexander S. Wiener identified the the Rhesus factor, in 1937, thus enabling physicians to transfuse blood without endangering the patient′s life.

Karl Landsteiner was awarded the Aronson Prize in 1926, the the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1930 and posthumously the Lasker Award in 1946.

Landsteiner is considered the father of transfusion medicine. His birthday 14 June is observed as World Blood Donor Day (WBDD).

Established in 2004, World Blood Donor Day serves to raise awareness of the need for safe blood and blood products, and to thank blood donors for their voluntary, life-saving gifts of blood. It is one of eight official global public health campaigns marked by the World Health Organization (WHO).

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