Louis Pasteur is a French chemist, one of the founders of microbiology and immunology. Has opened a new direction of chemistry – stereochemistry. He was a professor of chemistry and physics, a member of the Paris, French, and St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences. Has made an invaluable contribution to medicine, chemistry, biology.
Louis Pasteur was born in France, the town of Dole, on December 27, 1822, in the family of a tanner. He was educated at the college in Arbois, where he became an assistant teacher. Later he worked as a junior teacher in Besançon. On the advice of teachers in 1843 he entered the Paris Higher Normal School, which he graduated in 1847. He was a professor of physics at Dijon Lyceum, after – a professor of chemistry at Strasbourg and Lille universities.
As a student, Pasteur made his first discovery in the field of chemistry. In 1848, studying crystals of tartaric acid, he came to the conclusion that they consist of asymmetric molecules. Dividing the crystals into two parts, he discovered that they are optical antipodes. This discovery formed the basis of a new trend in chemistry – stereochemistry.
Studying the process of fermentation, in 1857 Louis Pasteur proved his biological nature. In his studies he came to the conclusion that fermentation is obtained as a result of the action of microorganisms – bacteria lacking oxygen. In 1861, Pasteur proposed a method of preserving liquid products by heat treatment, which was later called “pasteurization.”
Since 1865, Louis Pasteur began to study the causes of the disease of the silkworm in the south of France. The scientist found effective methods of fighting this disease and saved silkworm breeding. And since 1876 Pasteur devoted himself completely to immunology. He studied such diseases as: anthrax, maternity fever, cholera, rabies and others. In the process of research he established that diseases cause certain pathogens. In 1881 he developed a vaccine against anthrax, and in 1885 – from rabies. Thus, they made the first major step in the history of vaccination.
The great scientist died from uraemia on September 28, 1895 near Paris.