Gerhard Henrik Hansen (1841-1912), who earned his medical degree in 1866 from Royal Frederik's Hospital, Oslo. From 1868 he worked at Bergen, his birth-place, with leprosy expert D.C. Danielssen. After epidemiological study Hansen rejected the prevailing hereditary and/or miasmic theories of leprosy. In 1870-71 he studied relevant modern work at Bonn and Vienna, after which discovered the Mycobacterium leprae by 1873 at his lab in Bergen. This was subsequently stained and confirmed by Neisser in 1879 as causative agent of the disease, from samples provided by Hansen. (Not to be confused with Emil Christian Hansen (1842-1910), a Danish physiologist-biochemist.)

Last modified 9 December 2016