Mahdi Hasan earned his MBBS and MS (with Honours in Anatomy) degrees from Lucknow University. He joined Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) as a Reader in Anatomy (1963). He was awarded German Academic Exchange Fellowship (DAAD) in 1965 and learnt electron microscopy and neuroanatomy at Goettingen (Germany) under the supervision of Professor Paul Glees, focusing on trans-synaptic atrophy and mechanism of neuronal death. He was selected for Alexander von Humboldt Fellowship (1971) and investigated age-associated changes in the brain, mapping regional distribution and heterogeneity of neuronal lipofuscin (age-pigment). He earned PhD in 1978 and DSc in 1983. He headed the Department of Anatomy, was the Director of the Interdisciplinary Brain Research Centre and served as Dean, Faculty of Medicine before retiring from AMU (1996). Professor Hasan later Joined Department of Anatomy at Chhatrapati Shahuji Medical University, Lucknow as INSA senior scientist and later as Honorary INSA Scientist.
Academic and Research Achievements: Hasan taught Human Anatomy for 5 years. On returning to India, he earned full Professorship at Aligarh University (1972) and started Interdisciplinary Brain Research Centre. His research turned to pesticide and metal neurotoxicity. He reported a new method of staining zinc in the brain. Professor Hasan set up a Central Electron Microscope facility at Aligarh in 1985. His research group’s hypothesis that the age-pigment lipofuscin is derived from mitochondria as well as lysosomes has been confirmed by three independent investigators during 2002-04. He published 126 research articles, written fourteen book chapters and five books. He has mentored six MS and fourteen PhD students.
Other Contributions: Hasan was elected President of Indian Academy of Neurosciences, President of Association of Gerontology (India) and President of Anatomical Society of India. He has been advisor to WHO in Neurotoxicology, a Member of Governing Body of ICMR and an Expert, Medical Committee of UGC. He was on the International Advisory Board of Neurotoxicology (USA).
Awards and Honours: Professor Hasan received Hari Om Ashram Alembic Award of MCI (1979) and Dr BC Roy National Award (1991), He is also the recipient of Ativishisht Chikitsa Medal of College of Chest Physicians of India (1995) and Dr Bachhawat Life-Time Achievement Award of Indian Academy of Neurosciences (2004). He is a Fellow of International College of Surgeons, National Academy of Medical Sciences (India) and National Academy of Sciences (India), Allahabad (1992).