Sarkisov, Semion Alexandrovich 1895 - 1971


(1895-1971), neurologist

Semion Alexandrovich Sarkisov was born in Nagorno-Karabakh, Azerbaijan in 1895. After serving in the Red Army during the Soviet-Georgian War in 1921, Sarkisov pursued a medical degree at First Moscow State Medical University, qualifying in 1923. He subsequently joined the University’s Neurological Clinic under the tutelage of Professor Grigorij Rossolimo (1860-1928), before taking up a research scholarship at the Neurobiological Institute of Berlin under Professor Oskar Vogt (1870-1959). He returned to Moscow in 1927 and became the head of the Moscow Brain Institute a year later, a position he retained until his retirement in 1968.

During his forty-year career, Sarkisov conducted a range of investigations into the physiology and chemistry of the human brain, focusing particularly on the evolution of the cerebral cortex. He also played a key role in establishing the field of electroencephalography (EEG, the measurement of the electrical activity of the brain) in Russia, founding the Moscow Brain Institute’s Electroencephalographic Laboratory in the 1930s. The Laboratory facilitated a number of international exchanges with EEG experts in the following decades, including those at the Burden Neurological Institute in Bristol, England. These connections proliferated when Sarkisov became a representative of the Soviet Red Cross in Britain during the Second World War.

Sarkisov died on 13 December 1971 following a long illness.