Arthur Brown, virologist and head of the University of Tennessee Department of Microbiology (1969-88), was born in New York City, the son of Samuel S. and Ida Hoffman Brown. He received his B.A. in biology and chemistry from Brooklyn College in 1943 and his Ph.D. from the University of Chicago in 1950. In 1963-64 Brown received a Senior Fellowship with Professor Werner Arber (Nobel Prize winner, 1978) at the Institute of Molecular Biology, University of Geneva, Switzerland. Brown's area of specialization included viral pathogenesis and immunity.
Brown served as an instructor in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology, College of Medicine, State University of New York, Brooklyn, New York, 1951-55. From 1956 to 1968 he was adjunct professor for teaching and research at the University of Wisconsin, Georgetown University, George Washington University, and the University of Maryland. In 1957 he became chief virologist at the Biological Labs, Fort Dietrick, Frederick, Maryland, a post he held until he became chairman of the Department of Microbiology at the University of Tennessee in 1969.
Brown published more than sixty-five peer-reviewed publications. He was a Fellow and Diplomate in the American Academy of Microbiology. Honored both as a researcher and a teacher, he served as 1975 Macebearer at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, where he also received the 1979 Chancellor's Research Scholar Award and was named 1983 Distinguished Service Professor.
Brown was married to Elaine Belaief Brown; they had four children. He was a member of Heska Amuna Synagogue.