Louis Pasteur

Louis Pasteur (December 27, 1822 – September 28, 1895) was a French chemist andmicrobiologist who was one of the most important founders of medical microbiology. He is remembered for his remarkable breakthroughs in the causes and preventions of diseases. His discoveries reduced mortality from puerperal fever, and he created the first vaccines for rabies and anthrax. His experiments supported the germ theory of disease. He was best known to the general public for inventing a method to treat milk and wine in order to prevent it from causing sickness, a process that came to be calledpasteurization. He is regarded as one of the three main founders of microbiology, together with Ferdinand Cohn and Robert Koch.

Pasteur also made many discoveries in the field of chemistry, most notably the molecular basis for the asymmetry of certaincrystals. His body lies beneath the Institute Pasteur in Paris in a spectacular vault covered in depictions of his accomplishments inByzantine mosaics.

 Early life

 The house in which Pasteur was born, Dole

 Louis Pasteur was born on December 27, 1822, in Dole in the Jura region of France, into the family of a poor tanner. Louis grew up in the town of Arbois. This fact probably instilled in the younger Pasteur the strong patriotism that later was a defining element of his character. Louis Pasteur was an average student in his early years, but he was gifted in drawing and painting

His pastels and portraits of his parents and friends, made when he was 15, were later kept in the museum of the Pasteur Institute in Paris. He earned his bachelor of arts degree (1840) and bachelor of sciencedegree (1842) at the École Normale Supérieure. After serving briefly as professor of physics at Dijon Lycée in 1848, he became professor of chemistry at the University of Strasbourg, where he met and courted Marie Laurent, daughter of the university's rector, in 1849. They were married on May 29, 1849, and together had five children, only two of whom survived to adulthood; the other three died oftyphoid. These personal tragedies inspired Pasteur to try to find cures for diseases such as typhoid.

 Research career

Molecular asymmetry

In Pasteur's early work as a chemist, he resolved a problem concerning the nature of tartaric acid(1848). A solution of this compound derived from living things (specifically, wine lees) rotated the plane of polarization of light passing through it. The mystery was that tartaric acid derived by chemical synthesis had no such effect, even though its chemical reactions were identical and its elemental composition was the same. This was the first time anyone had demonstrated chiralmolecules.

Pasteur's doctoral thesis on crystallography attracted the attention of W. T. Fuillet, and he helped Pasteur garner a position of professor of chemistry at the Faculté (College) of Strasbourg.

In 1854, Pasteur was named Dean

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