Aoyama Tanemichi (青山胤通)

Tanemichi AOYAMA (June 15, 1859 - December 23, 1917) was a medical scientist and doctor of medicine. He specialized in internal medicine. He was enlisted in the Imperial Academy in 1906, granted the Grand Cordon of the Order of the Sacred Treasure in 1916, and conferred baron on December 14, 1917.

He was born in Edo as the third son of Kagemichi AOYAMA, who was a feudal retainer of the Naeki domain. After graduating from the University of Tokyo, Faculty of Medicine in 1882, he became an assistant for a pathology class at the same university. After he studied abroad at Humboldt University of Berlin, and worked as a professor of the first course for internal medicine in Medical College at Tokyo University, which was known as 'Aoyama Internal Medicine'; he also held posts as president of Medical College at Tokyo Imperial University and head of the Institute of Infectious Disease (present the Institute of Medical Science of the University of Tokyo). He was a court physician for the Emperor Meiji and served as a goyo-gakari (functions to do the business) for the Imperial Household Agency. He founded the Foundation for Cancer Research in 1901 and became its president. His graveyard is in Yanaka Cemetery of Yanaka, Taito Ward. His bronze statue, made by Taketaro SHINKAI, is placed at the east side of Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences at Tokyo University.

Tetsuzo AOYAMA (a former professor for the first surgical class of Faculty of Medicine at Tokyo Imperial University) was his adopted son.

He is known for having denounced and criticized Shibasaburo KITAZATO and Hideyo NOGUCHI. He is also said to have criticized the achievements of Umetaro SUZUKI, but this may be attributed to someone else, as suggested by a major theory. He also had a close relationship with Ogai MORI, and treated one of Ogai's best friends named Naojiro HARADA.

He insisted all his life that beriberi was an infectious disease, which became an established theory in Japanese Association of Medical Sciences at that time, but it is refused at present. On the other hand, he attempted to integrate the Institute of Infectious Disease, the precursor of the Institute of Medical Science, the University of Tokyo into the university's Faculty of Medicine, over which he was involved in a fierce battle with Shibasaburo KITASATO, the founder of the institute.

Achievements

On Plague Epidemic in Hong Kong in 1894,' 1895, Chugai Iji Shinpo, 377,1428-1433
On Plague Epidemic in Hong Kong in 1894,' 1895, Chugai Iji Shinpo, 375,1281-1288
Brief Summary of Research on Plague in Hong Kong,' 1894, the national hygiene association Dainihon Shiri-tsu Eiseikai, 138,941-959