Public Figure Profiles

Frank Macfarlane Burnet

Sir Frank Macfarlane Burnet, (3 September 1899 – 31 August 1985), usually known as Macfarlane or Mac Burnet, was an Australian virologist known for his contributions to immunology. He won a Nobel Prize in 1960 for predicting acquired immune tolerance and he developed the theory of clonal selection.

Burnet received his Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of Melbourne in 1924, and his PhD from the University of London in 1928. He went on to conduct pioneering research in microbiology and immunology at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research, Melbourne, and served as director of the Institute from 1944 to 1965. From 1965 until his retirement in 1978, Burnet worked at the University of Melbourne. Throughout his career he played an active role in the development of public policy for the medical sciences in Australia and was a founding member of the Australian Academy of Science (AAS), and served as its president from 1965 to 1969.

Burnet's major achievements in microbiology included discovering the causative agents of Q-fever and psittacosis; developing assays for the isolation, culture and detection of influenza virus; describing the recombination of influenza strains; demonstrating that the myxomatosis virus does not cause disease in humans. Modern methods for producing influenza vaccines are still based on Burnet's work improving virus growing processes in hen's eggs.

For his contributions to Australian science, Burnet was made the first Australian of the Year in 1960, and in 1978 a Knight of the Order of Australia. He was recognised internationally for his achievements: in addition to the Nobel, he received the Lasker Award and the Royal and Copley Medal from the Royal Society, honorary doctorates, and distinguished service honours from the Commonwealth of Nations and Japan.

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Some of their strengths

Frank Macfarlane Burnet has many admirable traits.

Based on spiritual traditions from around the world, they are someone who can be described as Confident, Optimistic, Extroverted, Organized, Passionate, Bold, and Energetic.

Smart and Sophisticated

According to Mysticism’s Astrology tradition, Frank Macfarlane Burnet is someone who is a smart, sophisticated, and organized person who displays kindness and grace in every day interactions, and who also has a passionate soul. A person who looks for jobs that tend to reflect their identity.

Strong and Resilient

Based on Daoism’s Ba-Zi or ‘Chinese Zodiac’ tradition, people who know Frank Macfarlane Burnet well know them as someone who can be strong, expansive, and stable like a big tree.

Independent and Organized

According to Hinduism’s Jyotisha or ‘Vedic Astrology’ tradition, many would also describe Frank Macfarlane Burnet as someone who is independent, organized, inventive, and generous.

A person who is curious and a loves learning, who seems to always know what to say, who has an optimism that can overcome any difficult situation, and who seems to be able to master almost any skill.

Realistic and Skillful

Based on the Mayan Tzolk’in or ‘Mayan Astrology’ tradition, Frank Macfarlane Burnet is someone who is able to separate emotions from reality, see the world in terms of right or wrong, and who is very good at getting things done.

They are also someone who is confident and creative, and who has a love for starting new projects, inventing new things, and giving back to the community.

Altruistic and Purposeful

According to Judaism’s Kabbalah tradition, Frank Macfarlane Burnet tends to be someone who has a desire to be of service to a higher calling and who is always trying to perfect things. Who can be practical and polished, reserved and methodical, and who tends to trust internal judgment before trusting anyone else at face value.

Some of Frank Macfarlane Burnet's challenges

While Frank Macfarlane Burnet has many strengths, nobody is perfect. They also have some challenging traits they need to manage.

For example, Frank Macfarlane Burnet can be Arrogant, Difficult, Perfectionist, Status-seeking, Domineering, Impatient, and Temperamental.

Difficult and Perfectionist

One of Frank Macfarlane Burnet's key challenges is that they are someone who can be difficult and too much of a perfectionist.

Frank Macfarlane Burnet must also exercise caution as they can have difficulty dealing with responsibility, authority, or criticism.

Domineering and Impatient

Frank Macfarlane Burnet is someone who can be demanding, egotistical, and controlling, can have a lack of judgment regarding personal finances, be argumentative and stubborn, and who can have a tendency to be withdrawn and spend time in self-imposed isolation.

Critical and Bossy

Finally, Frank Macfarlane Burnet also can be too focused on the small details of life, try to control whatever is happening, and be finicky and demanding.

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