Life Lines by Dr. Dolittle

Sponsored by the American Physiological Society

2018 August Krogh Lecturer, Dr. Stanley Hillman


Dr. Stanley Hillman, Professor Emeritus, Portland State University

Dr. Stanley Hillman was the recipient of this year’s August Krogh Distinguished Lectureship of the American Physiological Society’s Comparative and Evolutionary Physiology section.

This award was named after Dr. August Krogh, born 1874 in Denmark. His dissertation focused on studying gas exchange in frogs. In 1908 he became an Associate Professor and later chair of the Department of Zoophysiology at the University of Copenhagen. He was awarded a Nobel Prize n 1920 for his work on capillary blood flow and perfusion. In an often-quoted article published in 1929, Dr. Krogh eloquently described the importance and usefulness of comparative physiology in what has come to be called The Krogh Principle:

“For a large number of problems there will be some animal of choice, or a few such animals, on which it can be most conveniently studied.” (August Krogh. The Progress of Physiology. The American Journal of Physiology. 90(2), 243-251, 1929).

I cannot think of a better way to honor Dr. Stanley Hillman’s contributions to comparative physiology.

File:Cane Toad (Bufo marinus) (3152824422).jpg

Image of a cane toad By Cliff from Arlington, Virginia, USA, via Wikimedia Commons

Dr. Hillman presented his research yesterday at the annual Experimental Biology conference in San Diego. He spoke about the unique adaptations of cane toads that allow them to avoid dehydration from evaporative water loss. His research showed that the toads compensated for water loss by recovering water from their lymphatic system. In fact, they have lymph sacs as well as lymph hearts that are responsible for pumping lymph. What I also found interesting was the comparison of these cane toads to humans and other mammals with congestive heart failure that also have continual water loss to interstitial fluids.

Source of Dr. Krogh’s biography: Nobel Prize website


Categories: Comparative Physiology, Nature's Solutions, Physiology on the Road

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s