Lt Col Robert Knowles obtained MRCS, LRCP and BA (Cantab) degrees. His specialization was in Medical Science. He was in Indian Medical Service: Civil Surgeon, Jhansi (1908-12); was Deputy Director, Pasteur Institute, Kasauli (1912-14); was in Indian Expeditionary Force, Mesopotamia (1914-15); was Director, Pasteur Institute, Shillong (then in Assam) (1916-20); and Professor, Protozoology, School of Tropical Medicine, Kolkata (1921-36).
Academic and Research Achievements: Knowles made extensive contributions to medical science. The areas of his research included: snake-bite, kala-azar, surra, rat-bite fever, and intestinal amoebiasis. He also worked on medical protozoology, malaria (discovered monkey malaria parasite which goes under his name - Plasmodium Knowlesi, which is used for malaria therapy in neurosyphilis) and dysenteries (identified and classified different causes and types of dysenteries in India and their treatment).
Other Contributions: Knowles authored the book Protozoology, accepted all over the world as the guidebook on the subject in his time. He also authored Dysenteries in India and Malaria and its Prevention. He served as Editor of Indian Medical Gazette for more than a decade and was on the Editorial Board of Indian Journal of Medical Research.
Awards and Honours: Knowles was recipient of CIE (1935). He was a Fellow of School of Tropical Medicine and was the Organizing Secretary, Asiatic Society (1920).