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Carl Djerassi (October 29, 1923 – January 30, 2015) was an Austrian-born Bulgarian-American chemist, novelist, playwright and co-founding father of Djerassi Resident Artists Program with Diane Wood Middlebrook. He is greatest identified for his contribution to the improvement of oral contraceptive capsules,nicknamed the daddy of the capsule.
Carl Djerassi was born in Vienna, Austria, however spent the primary years of his infancy in Sofia, Bulgaria, the house of his father, Samuel Djerassi, a dermatologist and specialist in sexually transmitted illnesses. His mom was Alice Friedmann, a Viennese dentist and doctor. Both dad and mom have been Jewish.
Following his dad and mom’ divorce, Djerassi and his mom moved to Vienna. Until the age of 14, he attended the identical realgymnasium that Sigmund Freud had attended a few years earlier; he spent summers in Bulgaria together with his father.
Austria refused him citizenship and after the Anschluss, his father briefly remarried his mom in 1938 to permit Carl and his mom to escape the Nazi regime and flee to Sofia, Bulgaria, the place he lived together with his father for a yr Bulgaria, though not immune to antisemitism, proved a protected haven, as the nation managed to save its total 48,000-strong Jewish inhabitants from deportation to Nazi focus camps. During his time in Sofia, Djerassi attended the American College of Sofia the place he turned fluent in English.
In December 1939, Djerassi arrived together with his mom within the United States, almost penniless. Djerassi’s mom labored in a bunch apply in upstate New York. In 1949, his father emigrated to the United States, practiced in Pennsylvania and West Virginia, and ultimately retired close to his son in San Francisco.
Djerassi began his faculty profession at Newark Junior College, briefly attended Tarkio College, after which studied chemistry at Kenyon College, the place he graduated summa cum laude. After one yr at CIBA, he moved to the University of Wisconsin–Madison the place he earned his Ph.D. in natural chemistry in 1945. His thesis work examined the transformation of the male intercourse hormone testosterone into the feminine intercourse hormone estradiol, via a sequence of chemical reactions.
In 1942/43, Djerassi labored for CIBA in New Jersey, creating Pyribenzamine (tripelennamine), his first patent and one of many first industrial antihistamines.
In 1949 Djerassi turned affiliate director of analysis at Syntex in Mexico City and remained there via 1951. He has stated that one issue influencing him to select Syntex was that they’d a DU spectrophotometer. He labored on a brand new synthesis of cortisone based mostly on diosgenin, a steroid sapogenin derived from a Mexican wild yam. His crew later synthesized norethisterone (norethindrone), the primary extremely lively progestin analogue that was efficient when taken by mouth. This turned a part of one of many first profitable mixed oral contraceptive capsules, identified colloquially because the delivery-management capsule, or just, the Pill. From 1952–1959 he was professor of chemistry at Wayne State University in Detroit.
Djerassi participated within the invention in 1951, along with Mexican Luis E. Miramontes and Hungarian-Mexican George Rosenkranz, of the progestin norethisterone—which, in contrast to progesterone, remained efficient when taken orally and was far stronger than the naturally occurring hormone. His preparation was first administered as an oral contraceptive to animals by Gregory Goodwin Pincus and Min Chueh Chang and to ladies by John Rock.
In 1957, he turned vp of analysis at Syntex in Mexico City whereas on depart of absence from Wayne State. In 1960 Djerassi turned a professor of chemistry at Stanford University, a place he held till 2002 however solely half-time as he by no means left business. From 1968 till 1972 he additionally served as president of Syntex Research at Palo Alto.
The Syntex connection introduced wealth to Djerassi. He purchased a big tract of land in Woodside, California, and began a cattle ranch referred to as SMIP. (Initially an acronym for “Syntex Made It Possible”, different variants have been instructed since.) He additionally assembled a big artwork assortment.His assortment of works by Paul Klee was thought-about to be one of the crucial vital to be privately held. He organized for his Klee collections to be donated to the Albertina in Vienna and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, efficient on his demise.
Throughout the 1960s and 1970s, Djerassi continued to do vital scientific work, as a professor within the Department of Chemistry at Stanford University, and as an entrepreneur. He pioneered novel bodily analysis strategies for mass spectrometry and optical rotatory dispersion and utilized them to the areas of natural chemistry and the life sciences. Focusing on the steroid hormones and alkaloids, he elucidated the construction of steroids, an space wherein he printed over 1,200 papers. His scientific pursuits have been broad-ranging, and his technological achievements embrace work in instrumentation, prescription drugs, insect management, the appliance of synthetic intelligence in biomedical analysis, and the biology and chemistry of marine organisms.
In 1968, he began a brand new firm, Zoecon, which centered on environmentally comfortable strategies of pest management, utilizing modified insect progress hormones to cease bugs from metamorphosing from the larval stage to the pupal and grownup levels. Zoecon was ultimately acquired by Occidental Petroleum, which later bought it to Sandoz, now Novartis. Part of Zoecon survives in Dallas, Texas, making merchandise to management fleas and different pests.
In 1965 at Stanford University, nobel laureate Joshua Lederberg, laptop scientist Edward Feigenbaum, and Djerassi devised the pc program DENDRAL (dendritic algorithm) for the elucidation of the molecular construction of unknown natural compounds taken from identified teams of such compounds, such because the alkaloids and the steroids. This was a prototype for professional techniques and one of many first makes use of of synthetic intelligence in biomedical analysis.
Djerassi was a member of the Board of Sponsors of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists and was chairman of the Pharmanex Scientific Advisory Board.
Awards and honors:
- Ernest Guenther Award of the American Chemical Society (1969)
- Scheele Award (1972)
- National Medal of Science (President of the United States of America, 1973) for his work on the contraceptive capsule
- Perkin Medal (1975)
- Inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame (1978)
- First recipient of the Wolf Prize, 1978
- National Medal of Technology (President of the United States of America, 1991)
- Academy of Achievement Golden Plate Award (1980)
- Priestley Medal (American Chemical Society, 1992)
- Willard Gibbs Award (Chicago Section of the American Chemical Society., 1997)
- Austrian Cross of Honour for Science and Art, 1st class (1999)
- Othmer Gold Medal (2000)
- Prize of the German Chemical Society for Writers (2001)
- Grand Gold Medal for providers to the province of Lower Austria (2002)
- Gold Medal of the capital Vienna (2002)
- Grand Cross of the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany (2003)
- Erasmus Medal of the Academia Europaea (2003)
- American Institute of Chemists Gold Medal (2004)
- Lichtenberg Medal of the Göttingen Academy of Sciences (2005)
- Premio letterario Serono in Rome (2005)
- An Austrian postage stamp with Djerassi’s portrait, issued to mark his 80th birthday (2005) The Austrian authorities additionally despatched him a brand new Austrian passport.
- Grand Decoration of Honour in Silver for Services to the Republic of Austria (2008)
- Honorary doctorate from the Faculty of Humanities of the Technical University of Dortmund for his literary work (as 21 honorary doctorate) (2009)
- Alecrin Prize (2009, Vigo, Spain)
- Foreign Member of the Royal Society (2010)
- Edinburgh Medal (2011)
- Honorary doctorate from the Faculty of Chemistry and Geosciences, Heidelberg University (2011)
- Honorary doctorate from the Porto University (2011)
- Honorary Doctorate from the University of Vienna (2012)
- Honorary Doctorate from the Medical University of Vienna (2012)
- Honorary Doctorate from the University of Applied Arts, Vienna (2013)
- Honorary Doctorate from the Sigmund Freud University, Vienna (2013)
- Honorary Doctorate from the American University in Bulgaria (2013)
- Honorary Doctorate from the University of Innsbruck (2014)
Djerassi Glacier on Brabant Island in Antarctica is called after Carl Djerassi
An award that eluded Djerassi was the Nobel Prize, the place he’s thought-about one of many extra notable “snubs” by the Nobel Committee.
Djerassi was married thrice. He and Virginia Jeremiah have been married in 1943 and divorced in 1950. Djerassi married Norma Lundholm later that yr. They had two youngsters, and have been divorced in 1976.
In 1977, Djerassi started a relationship with bestselling biographer and Stanford University professor of English Diane Middlebrook, and in 1985 they have been married. In 2002 she turned professor emerita to work full-time as a biographer. In that very same yr, Djerassi additionally turned professor emeritus. They divided their time between properties in San Francisco and in London (their life there recalled by a good friend), till her demise on 15 December 2007.
On July 5, 1978, Djerassi’s artist daughter Pamela (born 1950; from his second marriage, to Norma Lundholm), dedicated suicide, which is described in his autobiography. With Middlebrook’s assist, Djerassi then thought-about how he may assist dwelling artists, quite than accumulating works of lifeless ones. He visited current artist colonies, akin to Yaddo and MacDowell, and determined to create his personal, the Djerassi Resident Artists Program. He closed his cattle ranch and transformed the barn and homes to residential and work house for artists. He and his spouse moved to a excessive rise in San Francisco that they’d renovated.
Djerassi’s son Dale (born 1953; from the wedding with Norma Lundholm) is a documentary filmmaker and personal investor. Djerassi described himself as a “Jewish atheist”.
Djerassi died on January 30, 2015, on the age of 91 from problems of liver and bone most cancers. Upon his demise Carl Djerassi was survived by his son Dale and Dale’s son Alexander (from Dale’s eight-yr marriage to Isabel Maxwell).
Djerassi printed extensively as a novelist, playwright and scientist. In 1985, Djerassi stated “I feel like I’d like to lead one more life. I’d like to leave a cultural imprint on society rather than just a technological benefit.” He went on to write a number of novels within the “science-in-fiction” style, together with Cantor’s Dilemma, wherein he explored the ethics of recent scientific analysis via his protagonist, Dr. Cantor. He additionally wrote 4 autobiographies, the most up-to-date of which, In Retrospect appeared in 2014. He wrote quite a lot of performs which have been carried out and extensively translated. His ebook Chemistry in Theatre: Insufficiency, Phallacy or Both discusses the potential pedagogic worth of utilizing dialogic type and the plot construction of performs with particular deal with chemistry.
Djerassi wrote 5 novels, 4 of which he describes as “science-in-fiction”, fiction which portrays the lives of actual scientists, with all their accomplishments, conflicts, and aspirations. The style can be referred to as Lab lit.
In his first two novels, Cantor’s Dilemma and Bourbaki Gambit, he reveals how scientists work and suppose. In Cantor’s Dilemma, there may be the suspicion of scientific fraud; in Bourbaki Gambit the query of non-public achievement stands within the heart. In the third, Menachem’s Seed, ICSI and the Pugwash group are the primary themes. In the final, NO, he reveals how younger scientists develop an thought so far as founding an organization to market a product – one thing Djerassi himself did within the area of pesticides.
The subject of the fifth novel, Marx Deceased, is the function of a author’s earlier bestsellers for the evaluation of a brand new work – in distinction to the evaluation of an nameless work or considered one of a previously unknown creator. He performs with this subject additionally in Bourbaki Gambit.
After his success with prose literature within the Science-in-Fiction style, Carl Djerassi began to write performs. Theatre, much more so than prose, appears to fulfill his want to work in a extra “dialogical” atmosphere than the monological pure sciences had allowed him to do. According to British director Andy Jordan, who has produced all of his performs in England, Djerassi’s dramatic works are “not wholly or straightforwardly naturalistic or realistic […but] avowedly text-driven, where ideas, themes, words and language were majorly important, a fact I had always to be conscious of as the director.”
Djerassi’s first play, An Immaculate Misconception (1998), coping with the in vitro fertilization process ICSI, was adopted by two performs about precedence struggles within the historical past of science, Oxygen (co-authored with Roald Hoffmann, 1999) and Calculus (2002), and a drama on the intersection of chemistry and artwork historical past, Phallacy (2004). Ego (2003, additionally produced below the title Three on a Couch), along with the docudrama Four Jews on Parnassus (2006, publ. 2008) and Foreplay (2010), are the one three dramatic items which don’t take care of science-in-literature however quite carry the notion of mental competitiveness into literature, philosophy and the humanities. Taboos (2006), a fancy play between reproductive, gender and political points, returns to Djerassi’s central issues as a scientist; his 2012 play Insufficiency is a bitter satire of each the scientific group and tutorial environments.
As in his novels, Djerassi’s performs incorporate the life and achievements of (generally well-known) scientists in addition to new scientific applied sciences. The science in his performs is all the time scientifically believable though the dramatic personae and places are fictitious. By putting scientists and analysis into dramatic worlds, he raises essential questions in regards to the sciences as cultural techniques and appears into inside conflicts and contradictions in science and between scientists. The fixed competitors between them, the necessity for precedence in new scientific discoveries even when the required pace necessitates dangerous and immoral means, in addition to the problematic penalties of latest discoveries are vital subjects of the performs.
Djerassi’s performs have discovered their manner into theatres across the globe and have been translated into numerous European and Asian languages. Djerassi repeatedly revised his performs and a few of them have totally different variations and a number of endings (particularly “An Immaculate Misconception”: the nationalities of the fundamental characters range, additionally the endings). Where doable, Carl Djerassi additionally cooperated with administrators within the manufacturing of dramatic performances. All of his performs have been printed in ebook type, lots of them in quite a lot of languages. Some of them could be downloaded from his web site.
As you’ll be able to see above; Carl Djerassi is a nicely educated, highly effective and wealthy one that was awarded and rewarded for his efforts in society. But the factor is that; he is a part of the worldwide conspiracy of the elites for full management of society. There is far more analysis wanted; I simply needed to archive this info earlier than they scrub it. It’s fascinating to word that he’s related to Maxwell and created contraception. There is far more to this. All connects again to Epstein and Maxwell.. Look for future information…