1986-1988 Adonis R.L. de Carvalho, Brazil


Adonis R.L. de Carvalho
1928-2014

IAP President 1986-1988

Adonis de Carvalho was born and educated in Recife on the northeast coast of Brazil. He received his MD from the Universidade Federal de Pernambuco, Recife, Brazil in 1950. During his postgraduate study period he spent 1954 on a Fellowship from the Institute of International Education at the MD Anderson Hospital in Houston, Texas. His life time professional appointment was in the University Department of the teaching hospital in the Federal University of Pernambuco, Recife from 1951-1997. During this time he moved up to be Professor and Head of the department.  After ‘retirement’ from the University he was given the title, Emeritus Professor. After leaving the University he established a successful private practice in pathology which he shares with his daughter, Maria.

In 1956, Adonis introduced frozen section diagnosis to Northeastern Brazil and in 1958 he founded the first population based Cancer Registry in Brazil. This led to an involvement with the WHO ‘blue books’ on the classification of tumours, the UICC (International Union Against Cancer) Geographic Pathology Committee, and the International Cancer Agency in Lyon, France, and a contribution to the UICC’S publication ‘Cancer Incidence in Five Continents.’ In 1963 he established a Human Cytogenetics Laboratory.

In 1972 Adonis established a post graduate training programme that led to a Master’s degree in Pathology in the University of Pernambuco. This was later adopted throughout Brazil. He was President (1974-1975) of the Latin-American Society of Pathology (SLAP) and while President he organized the 10th Latin-American Congress  of Pathology held in Recife (1975). At times this Congress had 20 simultaneous sessions! He was a major promoter of the founding of the Brazilian Division of the IAP and was the first IAP President from outside North America or Europe. He held many major public positions, both in the University and the Pernambuco Medical Council. His interest in the History of Medicine led him to establish a Museum of Medical History in Recife. He has a personal collection of vintage microscopes.


Prof. Dr. Adonis De Carvalho, -1928-2014- In Memoriam
Dr Adonis de Carvalho was the first Latin-american Pathologist who was President of The International Academy of Pathology -1986-1988- and he was also the first Latin-American laureate to receive the IAP’s Gold Medal.

He was, without a doubt, one of the most relevant Brazilian and also Latin-American Pathologists.

He was Full Professor and Emeritus Professor of the Pernambuco University, Chair of the Pathology Department of the Pernambuco Cancer Hospital, President of the Brazilian Society of Pathology and President of the Medical Regional Council.

He was the Mentor of several generations of Brazilian and International Pathologists among them, last but not least, his beloved daughter Maria do Carmo and granddaugther Paula.

Apart from having had an outstanding performance in the many and very well deserved academic and institutional positions that he occupied, Dr de Carvalho was an unpretentious man, who deeply loved his family and truly valued friendship above all things. He was an indefatigable hard worker with a proverbial enthusiasm for each challenge and for each day. Hopelessness was a feeling completely unknown to him. A noble spirit who lived with a constant ethic attitude.

Those of us who had the pleasure of having worked with him, today, are fully aware of the privilege of having known him, of the responsibility derived from his example and of the deep sorrow for his absence. The latter might be mitigated by the certainty of knowing that this past February 12, Adonis finished his fruitful life surrounded by the profound love of his family and friends and the sincere respect of his colleagues.

Eduardo Santini-Araujo
IAP President-Elect