Appaji Gilbert Sathyanesan received BSc, MSc and MA from Annamalai University. He did his PhD from Banaras Hindu University (BHU) under the guidance of Professor AB Misra and was appointed Lecturer at BHU (1957). He also worked with Professor Aubrey Gorbman at Columbia University, New York, as Postdoctoral Fellow (1962). He earned his DSc (1975) from BHU. He moved to the Institute of Medical Sciences, BHU and worked for the development of the Centre of Experimental Medicine and Surgery. He then returned to the parent department and retired as Head, Department of Zoology, BHU in 1986. He was also CSIR Emeritus Scientist at the Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute, Cochin.
Academic and Research Achievements: Sathyanesan established the hypophysical control reproductive cycle and functioning of other endocrine organs in the teleostean fishes. He discovered the uncontrolled growth potential of the neruosecretory axons from the hypophysectomised stalk of the goldfish. His investigations on the Pacific Ocean deep sea archaic fish Hydrolagus and primitive fishes living only in the Greatlakes, Polypterus, and Calamoichthys revealed that the hypothalamo-hypophysial complex and their microportal vasculature are comparable to that of tetrapods, which is a revelation of paramount evolutionary significance. He studied the neruroendocrines, hypoppysis, thyroid, gonads, pineal, interrenal and ependymal tanycytes of teleosts subjected to different environmental conditions. He also published 170 research articles and guided 16 PhD research scholars.
Other Contributions: Sathyanesan continued to be active in creating awareness in science, health and disease and environmental issues through TV talks, radio programmes, NGOs and social activities.
Awards and Honours: Professor Sathyanesan was awarded Hari Om Ashram Trust Award by ICAR (1976); Sunder Lal Hora Memorial Award by Indian Society of Ichthyologist (1982), Rafi Ahmed Kidwai Memorial Prize by ICAR (1984-85), and Eminent Scientist Medal by Zoological Society of India (1998).