Dr. Greenwalt, who is 91, is emeritus
director of research at Hoxworth. He goes to his office each day and
continues to write papers and explore new developments in red cell
Born in Hungary, Dr. Greenwalt came to the United States in 1920.
He earned his undergraduate degree and MD
from New York University, studied hematology at the New England Medical
Center under William Dameshek, and continued his interest in blood
disease while serving in the U.S. Army in India during World War II.
After the war, he became the medical
director of what is now the Blood Center of Southeastern Wisconsin. A
specialist in Rh factors and hemolytic disease of the newborn, Dr.
Greenwalt is credited with determining that red cells work better than
whole blood for exchange transfusions. He developed an interest in
blood groups, which led to collaboration with leading researchers,
including Robert Race and Ruth Sanger, at London's Lister Institute.
Dr. Greenwalt served as vice president of
the AABB, of which he was a founding member, and national director of
the American Red Cross Blood Program. He is credited with establishing
the "rare donor" registry for both organizations. In his laboratories
at the American Red Cross headquarters in Washington, D.C., he directed
research into hepatitis and the storage of red blood cells and
developed the first filter for white blood cells. His work on the
long-term storage of red cells while at Hoxworth has resulted in new
Founding editor of the journal
Transfusion, Dr. Greenwalt has contributed to over 200 major books and
research papers. In 1984 he was elected to the Institute of Medicine of
the National Academy of Sciences in recognition of his work in his
Dr. Greenwalt's late wife, Pia
Glas-Greenwalt, PhD, was also a nationally known UC scientist. She
earned recognition for her research on ancrod, a blood thinner derived
from snake venom.