Case history and photographs of case which led Gibson to his initial observation on the "second set" phenomena, 1942; photographs and correspondence relating to publications, 1942-1991; letter from Sir Peter Medawar, 1960; lectures and reprints, 1943-1991.
Papers of Professor Thomas Gibson (1915-1993), plastic surgeon.
- This material is held at
- ReferenceGB 250 RCPSG 55
- Dates of Creation1942-1991
- Name of Creator
- Language of MaterialEnglish
- Physical Description0.25 linear metres
- Direct Link
Scope and Content
Administrative / Biographical History
Tom Gibson was born in Kilbarchan, Renfrewshire, on 24 November 1915. He was educated at Paisley Grammar School and Glasgow University where he graduated MB, ChB in 1938. He worked in the Medical Research Council Burns Unit, Glasgow Royal Infirmary, 1942-4. While at the Burns Unit he made an outstanding contribution to the understanding of the mechanism of homograft rejection. He was joined in Glasgow by Peter Medawar (subsequently knighted and awarded a Nobel Prize) who had been working in Oxford on the same problem and their joint work "The fate of skin homografts in man," was published in the Journal of Anatomy in 1943. The article is quoted in Morton's Medical Bibliography as the work which placed the laws of transplantation on a firm scientific basis. During this period Gibson also established the principles of management of the shock phase of burns. He subsequently worked in an RAMC maxillofacial surgery team until demobilisation in 1947. Following the war he joined the West of Scotland Plastic Surgery Unit, initially at Ballochmyle, later in Canniesburn Hospital, where he became Director in 1970 until he retired in 1980. His researches with Professor R.M. Kenedi culminated in the establishment of the Bioengineering Department of Strathclyde University, in respect of which he was appointed Visiting Professor and awarded an honorary DSc.
He published widely on tissue immunology, burns, bioengineering and various aspects of plastic surgery including its history. He was Honorary Librarian and a member of Council of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow from 1964 to 1974 and was President from 1976 to 1978. He wrote The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow, A short history based on the portraits and other memorabilia, in 1983 when he was Honorary Curator of the College's art collection.
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