Famous Scientists (Microbiologist, Molecular Biologist)

Famous Scientists (Microbiologist, Molecular Biologist)

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In this tutorial, we have discussed ‘famous scientists‘ (likes Microbiologists, Molecular Biologists) in the field of modern science. 

Major Contributions of the Microbiologists in the field of Modern Science

Edward Jenner (17 May 1749 — 26 January 1823)

Edward Jenner

(17 May 1749 — 26 January 1823)

He was an English physician and scientist who was the pioneer discoverer of smallpox vaccine, the world’s first vaccine. The terms “vaccine” and “vaccination” are derived from Variolae vaccinae, the term devised by Jenner to denote cowpox. In 1796, he inserted pus taken from a milkmaid with cowpox, into a cut made in the arm of a local boy. Several days later, Jenner exposed the boy to smallpox. He was found to be immune. Jenner called his new method ‘vaccination’ after the Latin word for cow (vacca). Jenner was the first doctor to vaccinate people against smallpox.

Joseph Lister (5 April 1827 — 10 February 1912)

Joseph Lister

(5 April 1827 — 10 February 1912)

He was an English surgeon, also known as “father of modern surgery“. Lister’s discovered the antiseptic treatment of wounds. Lister found that airborne bacteria could cause infection in surgical wounds. He developed an antiseptic system to sterilize the surgical instrument and his hand using carbolic acid. In addition, he applied the acid around the wound, and directly on the dressings. Lister published his antiseptic method in The Lancet, in 1867. His antiseptic method gained recognition and was adopted as a standard procedure for treating wounds during surgery. Besides his discovery of antiseptic treatment of wounds, Lister’s became the second man in England to operate a brain tumour. He also developed a method of repairing ‘kneecaps‘ with metal wire and improved the technique of mastectomy.

Sir Ronald Ross (13 May 1857 — 16 September 1932)

Sir Ronald Ross

(13 May 1857 — 16 September 1932)

He was a British medical doctor who received the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine in 1902 for his work on the transmission of malaria. Becoming the first British Nobel laureate his discovery of the malarial parasite in the gastrointestinal tract of a mosquito in 1897 proved that malaria was transmitted by mosquitoes, and laid the foundation for the method of combating the disease.

Sir Alexander Fleming (6 August 1881 — 11 March 1955)

Sir Alexander Fleming

(6 August 1881 — 11 March 1955)

He was a Scottish physician who was recognized for discovering penicillin. The simple discovery and use of the antibiotic agent have saved millions of lives. Fleming — together with Howard Florey and Ernst Chain, who devised methods for the |arge-sca|e isolation and production of penicillin — received Nobel Prize in Physiology / Medicine in 1945. He also discovered an important bacteriolytic substance named Lysozyme (1921). About this time, he devised sensitivity titration methods and assays in human blood and other body fluids, which he subsequently used for the titration of penicillin. Sir Alexander wrote numerous papers on bacteriology, immunology, and chemotherapy, including original descriptions of lysozyme and penicillin.

waksman-13085-portrait-medium

Selman Waksman

(22 July 1888 — 16 August 1973)

He was a Russian-born American biochemist and microbiologist who is famous for his discovery of antibiotics, mainly streptomycin that revolutionized the medical world for its effective treatment against tuberculosis. Waksman initiated the studies of the decomposition of organic residues in soils and composts to form humus. He discovered

over twenty antibiotics and introduced procedures that have led to the development of many others. For his vital contribution and discovery of antibiotic streptomycin as an antidote for tuberculosis, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine.

Sergei Winogradsky

(1 September 1856 — 25 February 1953)

Sergei Winogradsky (1 September 1856 —25 February 1953Sergei Nikolaievich Winogradsky was a world famous microbiologist. He was born on 1 September, 1856 in Kiev, which was then in the Russian Empire and now is Ukraine’s capital city. His family were wealthy landowners and his father was the head of a bank. He attended a university prep school that offered both Greek and Latin as subjects that were considered much more important than the sciences in those days. Despite his dislike for the curriculum, he graduated from high school with a gold medal. In 1873, Winogradsky began studying law at the University of Kiev. He found the law uninteresting and transferred to the Division of Natural Science. He soon realized that science lectures were equally monotonous and unchallenging for him, so he left for the University of St. Petersburg to learn piano. Winogradsky dedicated two years to music and in 1877 returned to the second year of the natural science department. He graduated from the university with a diploma in science in 1881 and became a candidate to prepare for professorship. In 1884 he obtained a masters degree in botany where he investigated the effects of nutrients on yeast (Mycoderma vini) growth. He went to Strasbourg for studying at the laboratory of famous mycologist Anton de Bary in 1885. There he thoroughly studied the morphology and physiology of sulfur and iron bacteria. Winogradsky discovered that Beggiatoa obtained energy in the absence of light by oxidation of hydrogen sulfide to sulfur and then to sulfuric acid.

The same phenomena was discovered for iron bacteria, which oxidised iron monoxide (FeO) into iron oxide (Fe2O3). Winogradsky named the process mineral breathing. He also invented Winogradsky column that is still used to learn the communities of bacteria present in a sample under a controlled amount of nutrients and light. In 1888, he moved to Zurich. There he studied the process of nitrification and oxidation of nitrogen in soil. He confirmed that nitrification consisted of two stages, ammonium salts were oxidized into nitrites, which later turned into nitrates giving enough energy for microorganisms to assimilate carbon dioxide (CO2) from the atmosphere. He inferred that a complete synthesis of organic material by the action of living organisms had been accomplished on this planet independent of solar energy. This led to his greatest discovery ‘chemosynthesis

’.

Winogradsky returned to St. Petersburg for the period 1891-1905, and headed the division of general microbiology of the Institute of Experimental Medicine; during this period, he identified the obligate anaerobe Clostridium pasteurianum, which is capable of fixing atmospheric nitrogen.

In 1901, he was elected an honorary member of the Moscow Society of Naturalists and in 1902, corresponding member of the French Academy of Sciences.

He was the first in the world to introduce modern ideas of microorganisms being part of natural cycles of elements. The microbiologist was elected the full-time member of Russian Medical Board in 1904. He retired from active scientific work in 1905, dividing his time between his private estate and Switzerland. In 1922, he accepted an invitation to head the division of agricultural bacteriology at the Pasteur Institute at an experimental station at Brie-Comte-Robert, France, where he remained until he again retired in 1940.

From 1926 to 1929, Winogradsky focussed on a detailed study of aerobic organisms involved in cellulose decomposition. He was the first person to describe the fusiform, cellulose-degrading cells in the genus Cytophaga. During this period he worked on a number of topics, such as iron bacteria, nitrogen fixation by Azotobacter, and culture methods for soil microorganisms. Winogradsky was married to Zinaida in 1879 and had four daughters. During his tenure at Pasteur Institute, one of his daughters, Helen, worked with him as a microbiologist. He died in France on 25 February 1953, aged 97.

Rudolf  Virchow

FATHER OF MODERN PATHOLOGY

(13 October 1821 — 5 September 1902)

Rudolf  Virchow _ (13 October 1821 — 5 September 1902)

Rudolf Ludwig Carl Virchow, was a renowned and influential German physician and pathologist of the 19th century. He was a pioneer in veterinary pathology and social medicine. He was also an anthropologist, biologist, writer, editor of several medical journals and a statesman noted for his efforts in advancing public health.

He was born on 13 October 1821. He was the only child of Carl Christian Siegfried Virchow and Johanna Maria in Schievelbein in Pomerania, Prussia (now known as Swidwin in Poland). He did his elementary schooling in Schievelbein.

He graduated from Gymnasium in 1839 and was awarded a military fellowship to study at Berlin’s Friedrich-Wilhelms Institute (now Humboldt University of Berlin) from where he got his medical degree in 1843. After his graduation, he worked under Johannes Peter Muller as a subordinate physician and later did his internship at Berlin’s Charite Hospital. In 1844, Virchow joined Robert Froriep, a prosector, who was also editor of a journal that dealt specially with international work. He studied microscopy under Froriep and developed an interest in pathology.

Virchow published his first scientific paper in 1845 in which he wrote the earliest known pathological descriptions of leukemia. He qualified the medical licensure examination in 1846, and immediately succeeded Froriep as hospital prosector at the Charité. In 1847, he was appointed to his first academic position with the rank of privatdozent.

With colleague, Benno Reinhardt, he started a journal Archiv für pathologische Anatomie und Physiologie und für klinische Medizini (now known as Virchow’s Archies) in 1847.

To fight political injustice he founded Die medicinische Reform (Medical Reform), a weekly newspaper for promoting social medicine, 1848. The newspaper ran under the banners “medicine is a social science” and the physician is the natural attorney of the poor”.

His first major work was a six-volume Handbuch der speciellen Pathologie und Therapie (Handbook on Special Pathology and Therapeutics) published in 1854. In 1855, he published his famous work describing omnis cellula e cellula“ (All cells come from cell).

He contributed to understand cellular pathology and stated that diseases could be characterised and accurately diagnosed by typical anatomical changes.

Among his books, Cellular Pathology, published in 1858 is regarded as root of modern pathology and also popularised, the third dictum of cell theory ‘Omnis Cellula e cellula‘. He created the field of comparative pathology.

He founded Zeitschrift für Ethnologie (Journal of Ethnology). The latter is published by German Anthropological Association and the Berlin Society for Anthropology, Ethnology, and Prehistory, the societies of which he was the founder.

Virchow married Ferdinande Rosalie Mayer (Rose Virchow) in 1850. They had three sons and three daughters. Rudolf died of heart failure,

on 5 September 1902, in Berlin.

In 1892, he was awarded the British Royal Society’s Copley Medal. His contributions include:

• He was the first person to identify leukemia in 1847. In 1857, he was the first to describe a type of tumor called chordoma that originated from the clivus.

• He also explained the mechanism of pulmonary thromboembolism for the first time.

• He developed a systematic method of autopsy.

• Virchow was the first to analyse hair in criminal investigation and made the first forensic report in 1861.

• He also described the life cycle of Trichinella spiralis (roundworm).

Virchow was an opponent of Darwin’s theory of evolution.

Virchow also contributed to anthropology, paleontolgy and archeology. He believed that the Neanderthal man was a modern Homo sapiens, in which deformations were caused by rickets and arthritis

Major Contributions of the Molecular Biologists in the field of Modern Science

Francis Crick

(8 June 1916 — 28 July 2004)

He was a British molecular biologist, biophysicist, and neuroscientist who is responsible for discovering the double-helix structure of the DNA strand (along with James Watson and Maurice Wilkins). He helped develop radar and magnetic mines during World War II. After the war, he began researching the structure of DNA for the University of Cambridge Medical Research Council at its Cavendish Laboratory with James D. Watson. He shared the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine in 1962 for his work and continued conducting research until his death in 2004. Beyond winning the Noble prize, Crick was awarded the Prix Charles Leopold Meyer of the French Academy of Sciences in 1961.

Francis Crick (8 June 1916 -  28 July 2004)

Rosalind Franklin

(25 July 1920 — 16 April 1958)

She was a British biophysicist and X-ray crystallographer best known for her contributions to the discovery of the molecular structure of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA), RNA, and viruses, etc. She learned crystallography and X-ray diffraction, techniques that she applied to DNA fibers. One of her photograph of the “B” form of DNA, known as photograph 51, provided key insights into DNA structure. Other scientists used it as evidence to support their DNA model and took credit for the discovery. Franklin led pioneering work on tobacco mosaic and poliovirus. Franklin died of ovarian cancer in 1958, at the age of 37.

Rosalind Franklin (25 July 1920 - 16 April 1958)

Har Gobind Khorana

(9 January 1922 – 9 November 2011)

He was an Indian-born American biochemist who specialized in the study of proteins and nucleic acids, shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine with Robert W. Holley and Marshall W. Nirenberg in 1968 for discoveries related to the genetic code and its function in protein synthesis. In addition to developing methods for investigating the structure of the nucleic acids, Khorana introduced many of the techniques that allowed scientists to decipher the genetic code and show how ribonucleic acid (RNA) can specify the structure of proteins. Khorana and his team succeeded in synthesizing the first wholly artificial copy of the yeast gene. His later research explored the molecular mechanism underlying the cell signaling pathways of vision in vertebrates. In 19805 Khorana synthesized the gene for rhodopsin, a protein involved in vision.

Har Gobind Khorana ( 9 January 1922 - 9 November 2011)

James Watson

(6 April 1928)

He is an American molecular biologist, geneticist, and zoologist, is credited with the discovery of the doub|e-helix structure of DNA along with Francis Crick and Maurice Wilkins. Watson received a Nobel Prize in 1962 and worked on cancer research and

mapping the human genome. He later came under fire for several controversial remarks on subjects ranging from obesity to race-based intelligence.

James Watson (6 April 1928)

Alec Jeffreys

(9 January 1950)

He is a British geneticist who was one of the first to discover inherited variation in human DNA. He developed the milestone techniques of genetic fingerprinting and profiling, using variations in the genetic code to uniquely identify people. These are now widely used in forensic science and paternity testing. He developed new methods to characterize rare new mutations in DNA as well as places in chromosomes where DNA is reshuffled by recombination. He identified recombination hotspots where most reshuffling occurs and carried out pioneering work to understand how these hotspots work. Alec was knighted in 1994 for services to science and technology.

Alec Jeffreys (9 January 1950)

Major Contributions of the Taxonomists in the field of Taxonomy

Carolus Linnaeus

Carolus Linnaeus

(1707-1778)

He was a Swedish scientist, who laid the foundations of the modern scheme of taxonomy. During his study at the University of Lund, Linnaeus became convinced in the stamens and pistils of flowers lay the basis for the classification of plants. He introduced binomial nomenclature for plants and animals. His notable publications include Genera Plantarum (1937), Species Plantarum (1753), and System Naturae (1758).

Ernst Heinrich Philipp August Haeckel

Ernst Heinrich Philipp August Haeckel

(1834-1919)

He was a German zoologist, and philosopher of science, also known as “The German Darwin” who was a key figure during the early years of the “First Darwinian revolution“, a time period when the foundation for the development of our modern evolutionary view of the biosphere was laid. He discovered and described hundreds of species, coined key terms, such as ecology, phylum, and ontogeny/phylogeny, and was well known for his popularised version of the “recapitulation theory” during embryonic development of animals. He proposed a three kingdom classification system of organisms. In 1908, Haeckel received the Linnaean Society of London’s prestigious “Darwin—Wallace Medal“.

John Hutchinson

John Hutchinson
(1884-1972)

He was a British botanist from England who proposed a phylogenetic system ofclassification. His work was mainly concerned with the classification of angiosperms. His classification system first appeared in a two—vo|ume work, The Families of Flowering Plants, which underwent several revisions and the finally appeared in 1973. In 1969, he published Evolution and Phylogeny of Flowering Plants.

Armen Takhtajan

Armen Takhtajan
(1910-2009)

He is one of the most important taxonomists in 20thcentury plant evolution, systematics, and biogeography. He presented a system of classification on plants in 1959 in his book Die Evolution der Angiosperm (German), which was published in English in 1969 as Flowering Plants: Origin and Dispersal. He was awarded, the Henry Allan Gleason Award by the New York Botanical Garden for the book Diversity and Classification of Flowering Plants (1997). In his book Flowering plants, he presented a concise and significantly revised system of plant classification based on the most recent studies in plant morphology, embryology, phytochemistry, cytology, molecular biology, and palynology.

Robert Harding Whittaker

Robert Harding Whittaker
(1920 -1980)

He was a distinguished American plant ecologist and was the first to propose the five kingdom taxonomic classification in 1969. Whittaker received the Ecological Society of America’s Eminent Ecologist Award in l981. Whittaker’s most cited work is his undergraduate textbook, Communities and Ecosystems (1970) which not only introduced thousands of students throughout the world to ecology but also provided a brief summary of highly diverse literature and new insights useful to professional ecologists. Shortly before his death, the Ecological Society
of America honoured him with its highest award, that of Eminent Ecologist.


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