Elected F.R.S. 1965
Charles Edmund Ford was distinguished for his outstanding contributions to mammalian cytogenetics, particularly human cytogenetics. He was especially renowned for his part in establishing the number of human chromosomes as 46, rather than 48 as previously believed. However, his contributions to the use of chromosome variants as cell markers in tracing cell lineages, particularly of haemopoietic cells, were of equal importance. He had a great mastery of cytological techniques and his ability to devise suitable methods for mammalian cells was a major factor in his contribution to the explosive advance of human and other mammalian genetics in the 1960s. Equally important were his superb observational powers in interpreting chromosome aberrations under the microscope, and his scrupulous adherence to scientific method.