Jaladhi Kumar Sarkar did his MB from University of Calcutta, DipBact from University of London, UK and PhD (1958) from University of Calcutta. He worked as Director and Professor of Virology, School of Tropical Medicine, Kolkata, and also as Specialist in Pathology, Indian Army.
Academic & Research Achievements: Sarkar is credited with the first publication in India on antibiotic resistance of bacteria and on pathogenic E. coli. He showed that smallpox virus strains vary in virulence; and asymptomatic carriers can spread smallpox. He showed the presence of smallpox and chicken-pox viruses in the same patient, while studying dengue haemorrhagic fever (DHF). Sarkar developed an animal model to prove pathogenesis and also proved that chikungunya virus can cause DHF. In the field of leprosy, he isolated a new variety of propionibacterium from leprous skin and established its etiological role. He also authored the book entitled Sri Ramakrishna’s Physician, Dr Mahendralal Sarkar.
Other Contributions: Sarkar served as Member of the WHO Expert Advisory Panel on Virus Diseases, WHO Expert Committee on DHF, WHO Consultant on Smallpox, Scientific Advisory Board, and International Haemorrhagic Fever Foundation. He served as Editor of the publication Udbodhan and Member, Editorial/Advisory boards of Applied Medicine and Annals of Indian Academy of Medical Sciences.
Awards and Honours: Professor Sarkar was bestowed Coate’s Medal by the University of Calcutta (1965), Barclay Medal by Asiatic Society (1993) and YS Narayana Rao Oration by ICMR (1969). He was elected Fellow of the National Academy of Medical Sciences, New Delhi and Indian Virological Society.