“This article chronicles the life and careers of a mother, Cecile & 2 daughters, Marthe & Marguerite Vogt who had remarkable careers as research scientists. This was an era when women were not readily accepted in the scientiﬁc circles of academia.
Cecile Vogt played a key role in brain research during the ﬁrst half of the 20th century. By utilizing new ways of investigating brain function that included structural & functional criteria, she established herself as one of the leading women scientists of her time
[read her profile on our website ]
She married Oskar Vogt (1870–1959) in 1899 when he came to Paris to work with Joseph Jules Dejerine. Their scientiﬁc activities were housed in a series of research institutes developed and directed by Oskar.
Cecile helped to identify functional units of the cerebral cortex in conjunction with Korbinian Brodmann (1868–1918)
She correlated brain anatomy with cerebral palsy and contributed to the elucidation of the pathology associated with Huntington’s chorea.
In the late 1920s, Cecile’s research ﬁndings provided a foundation for launching the employment of pharmacotherapeutic interventions for psychiatric disorders. Cecile later redeﬁned [hysteria] as a somatic problem involving the structure & function of the corpus striatum
Cecile Vogt was also credited with the training of many young scientists, including Delbruck & Dulbecco
Cecile preferred to remain in the background. As a result, she never received proper recognition
[read our post No Nobel Prize for Cecile Mugnier Vogt ]
Marthe Vogt’s (1903–2003) accomplishments, like her Mother’s, were an extreme rarity for her time and from her early life she and her sister were exposed to a strong scientiﬁc environment by her parents
[she will be one of our WiNeu pioneers]
Although not of Jewish heritage and devoid of any strong political beliefs, Vogt was one of the few
German scientists who was outspoken in her disdain for Nazism. It soon became apparent that she would have to leave Germany to continue her work
she departed Germany in 1935 with a Rockefeller Travelling Fellowship. For the remainder of her career, Vogt divided her time among London, Cambridge and Edinburgh
It’s not hyperbole to state that Marthe was one of the most accomplished neuroscientists of the 20th century
the ﬁrst to demonstrate the release of multiple transmitters in the brain (acetylcholine,norepinephrine,serotonin,dopamine),Vogt provided the framework for future studies
By the time Marthe Vogt retired in 1968, she received many other honors for her work in neuropharmacology… Yet, she still found time to help refugees from Spain during the Spanish Civil War, assist displaced Jews, and serve as a member of an anti-nuclear organization.
After the war, Marguerite had been so repelled by her experiences with Fascism that she welcomed an oﬀer of a position in the US at the California Inst. of Technology
after Delbruck suggested that Marguerite collaborate w/ a young faculty member by the name of Renato Dulbecco,
she undertook a study to develop a culture method for polio virus and a quantitative assay to identify live virus particles. Marguerite & Dulbecco thus became the ﬁrst researchers to observe that polio virus formed plaques in tissue culture.
Beginning in the 1970s, Marguerite’s work on viruses and oncogenic expression provided important clues as to the genetic nature of neoplasia. Being funded by the NIH well into her 80s, Marguerite continued to author papers through the 1990s.
Marguerite Vogt may be viewed as one of science’s greatest unsung female researchers. She did not like to give talks or market her work; and it was not until 1973 that Marguerite was appointed to an independent position as a research professor.
However, she was credited with the training of many young scientists & derived true pleasure in their successes. Several of them went on to win Nobel Prizes, including David Baltimore & Paul Berg
[read our post ‘Marguerite Vogt. Just a wonderful person ]
The careers of Marthe, Marguerite, and Cecile Vogt helped immeasurably to fortify the tradition of women pursuing a research path. All three women had a set of scientiﬁc goals they wanted to achieve that were far-ranging.
they took advantage of living & functioning in an atmosphere that was conducive for expressing their commitment to science;this provided them w/ an enduring legacy & paved the way for other female scientists that followed them”
Rubin. The Vogt family,2017