Alexander Fleming Inventor of Penicillin Childhood Born on Lochfield Farm, Darvel, Ayrshire on August 6, 1881

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Alexander Fleming Inventor of Penicillin


  • Born on Lochfield Farm, Darvel, Ayrshire on August 6, 1881.

  • Was a farmer's son.

  • Moved to London at age 13, to stay with his older brother.


  • Attended Louden Moor School, Darvel School, and Kilmarnock Academy.

  • In London, he attended Polytechnic.

St. Mary's

  • Met Sir Almroth Wright, a professor at St. Mary’s.

  • Joined his laboratory staff.

  • Spent the rest of his life there, as a bacteriologist.


  • Discovered in 1928.

  • Was working in his lab, trying to kill a deadly bacteria, when he noticed a blue mold growing on the dish.

Not an ordinary mold

  • Learned that it was the mold Penicillum Notatum.

  •  Penicillin is found in this mold.

  • Noticed that the bacteria around the mold was dissolving.

How it is was Developed

  • For 9 years, nobody could purify the Penicillum Notatum to get the pure penicillin.

  • Finally, in 1938, a team of Oxford University Scientists, headed by Howard Florey and Ernst B. Chain helped to develop penicillin.

Mass Production

  • Methods for it’s mass production, purification, and stabilization were developed in the U.S., in cooperation with the Department of Agriculture. The US government paid for its mass production.

  • If not for this, thousands of people would die.

How Penicillin is used

What it cures

How it works

  • Penicillin works by killing bacteria. To do this, it interferes with the bacteria’s ability to synthesize the cell wall.

Forms of Penicillin

  • There are many different forms of Penicillin, which all come from the molds of genus named Penicillum. Penicillin G, Penicillin V, Ampicillin, and Amoxicillin are the most commonly used forms of Penicillin.

World War II

  • Penicillin was introduced to the world just in time for World War II. It helped save many lives during the war, and has been greatly appreciated since.

Later Life

  • He married a nurse, and they had a son named Robert, who was born in 1924. His wife died in 1949. He was working with Amalia Coutsouris Voureka in a laboratory, and they married in 1953. He later died at the age of 74, on March 11, 1955.

Awards and Recognitions

About Me!

  • My name is Sarah and I am 13 years old. I like swimming, tennis, and skiing. My favorite foods are fast food, dessert, and Italian.


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  • The New Book of Knowledge. 2000. Grolier Incorporated. Danbury, Connecticut.

  • The World Book Encyclopedia. 1999. World Book Incorporated. Chicago, Illinois.

  •  Comptons Interactive Encyclopedia Deluxe.

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