Smith, Audrey 1915 - 1981

Audrey Ursula Smith was a British cryobiologist, who discovered the use of glycerol to protect human red blood cells during freezing.

In 1935, she graduated from King's College, London with a first class honours BSc in general science, and in 1936, with a BSc from Bedford College for Women in physiology. Smith was house physician at King's College Hospital, in 1942, and clinical pathologist from 1943 to 1944. She was a pathologist at Epsom public health clinic from 1944 to 1945, and for the Nottingham Emergency Public Health Laboratory Service from 1945 to 1946.

From 1946 to 1970, she was a researcher at the National Institute for Medical Research in Mill Hill, London. During her work here with Sir Alan Parkes and Christopher Polge, she discovered the first practical cryoprotectant molecule. In 1969, Smith was a joint winner with Polge and Parkes of the John Scott Award of the city of Philadelphia for their method of low temperature preservation of living cells and tissues. Audrey Smith was awarded the Kamerlingh Onnes medal in 1973.

From 1970 to 1981, she was on the staff of the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital at Stanmore.