Jan Evangelista Purkinje, Commentatio de examine physiologico organi visus et systematis cutanei [Commentary on the Physiological Examination of the Visual Organs and the Cutaneous System (the Skin)], Bratislava, 1823
Purkinje was the first researcher to study the papillary ridges common to human and simian hands. He found nine distinctive patterns, which he described in this first medical treatise on the subject. His work inspired Francis Galton, in the late 19th century, to try to use Purkinje's patterns as the basis of a fingerprint classification system that could identify specific individuals.
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