My watch list  

Johannes Andreas Grib Fibiger

  Johannes Andreas Grib Fibiger (April 23, 1867 Silkeborg - January 30, 1928 Copenhagen) was a Danish scientist who won the 1926 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. Fibiger had claimed to find an organism he called Spiroptera carcinoma that caused cancer in mice and rats. Later, it was shown that this specific organism was not the primary cause of the tumors. Because of this, some consider Fibiger's Nobel Prize to be undeserved, but others credit Fibiger with showing that external stimuli can induce cancer.


While studying tuberculosis in lab rats, Fibiger found tumors in some of his rats. He discovered that these tumors were associated with parasitic nematode worms that had been living in some cockroaches that the rats had eaten. He thought that these organisms may have been the cause of the cancer. In fact, the rats had been suffering from a vitamin A deficency and this was the main cause of the tumors. The parasites had merely caused the tissue irritation that drove the damaged cells into cancer; any tissue irritation could have induced the tumors. Although the specific link between the parasites and cancer was later known to be relatively unimportant, the idea that tissue damage was a cause of cancer was still an important advance in cancer research.


Fibiger became a medical doctor in 1890 and studied under Robert Koch and Emil Adolf von Behring in Berlin. He received his research doctorate from the University of Copenhagen in 1895 and became a professor there.


  • Nobel Lectures, Physiology or Medicine 1922-1941, Elsevier Publishing Company, Amsterdam, 1965.
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Johannes_Andreas_Grib_Fibiger". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
Your browser is not current. Microsoft Internet Explorer 6.0 does not support some functions on Chemie.DE