Dr Max Theiler was born on 30 January 1899 in Pretoria. He studied medicine at the University of Cape Town Medical School from 1916 to 1918. He graduated at the London School of Medicine in 1922. Theiler joined the Rockefeller Foundation in 1930. It is while there that he did extensive research on yellow fever and other viral diseases.
He headed the research team that produced the vaccination for yellow fever. It was this achievement that led to him being awarded the Nobel Prize. He was the first ever South African to receive the prize. Theiler retired from the Rockefeller foundation in 1964 and joined Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut, as professor of epidemiology and microbiology. Theiler died in 1972. He had married Lillian Graham and they had one daughter.
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