Past Issues

The Introduction of Neuroscience in Spain through the Work of Luis Simarro

Francisco López-Muñoz, Francisco Pérez-Fernández

Background: The figure of Luis Simarro Lacabra is not well-known outside Spain, but within the country became a character of special scientific and public importance. Luis Simarro, a person of a marked progressist spirit, not only was involved from his youth for in political matters, showing great interest in the modernization of a nation anchored in traditionalism, but also transferred this way of thinking to his professional work as a doctor, neurologist, histologist, psychiatrist, psychologist, and teacher. Methods: The authors gathered biographic story of Simarro and summarized his work in microscopic work in neuroscience and the development of experimental psychology. Results: Simarro would become, for his own merit, one of the great founders of Spanish neuroscience, to which he made great contributions together with Santiago Ramón y Cajal. He was also the first professor of experimental psychology at Spanish University and developed an interesting political and institutional work. In fact, his lack of international recognition is mainly due to the fact that Luis Simarro, despite his great talent, was not especially prone to publishing the scientific works. Therefore, his neurological findings, sometimes, were to be unjustly attributed to other colleagues. Conclusion: In this article, we have provided a brief profile of the figure of Simarro with the intention of projecting the importance of his figure of it beyond Spanish borders.
Key Word histology, psychiatry, psychology, Santiago Ramón y Cajal
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