Last year marked the 50th anniversary of Lord Nuffield’s death and in the 1930s he did five University Chairs for medicine and surgery.
An article was originally written last year to coincide with an exhibition put on by the Bodleian Library, Oxford.
Entitled ‘Great Medical Discoveries: 800 years of Oxford innovation’, in which Professor John Chassar Moir C.B.E. features. He was originally from Montrose and the Maternity Unit in the town is named after him.
During the years between 1937 and 1967 many research projects were initiated and carried out in the Department of Obsterics and Gynaecology at the Radcliffe Infirmary Oxford, for the advancement of the safe deliveries of mothers and babies.
This included the use of diagnostics techniques using x-ray, pain relief and research into drugs among them.
Professor John Chassar Moir CBE’s early work in the 1930s was leading research into the identification and refinement of Ergot, which is a fungus that grows on rye, which had been known about since the 16th century as having the ability to cause uterine contractions.
This was isolated to become the drug Ergometrine which is now used worldwide to control post–partum haemorrhage.
His later work was in developing operative techniques to repair birth injuries in mothers.
Chassar Moir was a Scot as he was born in Montrose, Angus, Scotland in 1900.
He was a quiet, kind man who loved his work, his patients, and his family. He was a family man.
Of all the many honours conferred on him, the one of Honoris Causa – Master of Midwifery, by the The Worshipful Society of Apothecaries,is a perfect description of him, and conveys a tenderness which was reflected in his character.