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Helen K. BERRY


Helen K., died peacefully on November 27, 2012 in her home at the Llanfair Retirement Community. She was born October 12, 1925 in Dallas, TX to Homer and Eva (Smith) Kirby and was married to the late Jim S. Berry for over 50 years. She attended the University of Texas at Austin, where she received a B.S. in chemistry in 1947 and M.A. in biochemistry and genetics in 1949. Her professional career began as a research scientist in the Biochemical Institute at the University of Texas. She was a pioneer in the development of paper-chromatographic procedures for detection and measurement of biological fluids. In 1956 upon moving to Cincinnati, she began one of the early programs in the United States for treatment of phenylketonuria (PKU) and in 1958 initiated one of the first programs to screen newborn infants for PKU. The methods she established for diagnosis, treatment, and long-term management of patients with PKU are followed by practitioners involved with treatment of PKU throu ghout the U.S. and other countries. Mrs. Berry was professor of pediatrics at the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine. She was director of the Division of Inborn Errors of Metabolism of the Children's Hospital Research Foundation from 1968 to 1985 and director of the Metabolic Disease Center of the Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center until her retirement in 1990. She was awarded the Drake Medal by the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine in 1991 for her outstanding contributions to research. She was a founding member of the Society for Inherited Metabolic Disorders, serving as its secretary/treasurer for many years and as its president in 1990-91. She was a Cincinnati Enquirer "Woman of the Year" in 1985. She was a founding member of the Northern Hills Unitarian Universalist Fellowship. She is survived by her children Evelyn M. Berry, of Buffalo NY; Susan A. Berry, of St Paul MN, and Eugene H. Berry, of Cincinnati OH, by six grandchildren and one g reat-grandchild. The family requests donations to the Society for Inherited Metabolic Disorders ( or to Northern Hills Fellowship ( Cremation services were private. A memorial service will be held in the spring.

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Published in The Cincinnati Enquirer from Nov. 29 to Dec. 2, 2012
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