Robert Vudvord

Picture of Robert Vudvord

Date of Birth: 04/10/1917

Age: 62

Place of birth: Boston

Citizenship: United States


His father died a year after the birth of her son. As a child, Vladimir spent much time at work in a home chemistry lab. At age 16 he graduated from high school Quincy. Even then, an amazing knowledge of organic chemistry B. allocated among students research colleges. When in 1933 he received a scholarship and entered the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, he was allowed to make your schedule. He was also given the opportunity to work in the laboratory of self-designed studies of hormones. In 1936 B. received a Bachelor of Science, and in 1937 - a doctorate.

During the summer semester 1937 W. studied at the University of Illinois, and then went to Harvard and became an assistant Elmer P. Kohler, head of the department of organic chemistry. He remained at Harvard until the end of his career, rising from assistant professor in 1944 and full professor in 1950 (Associate Professor V. began in 1946). In 1953 and 1960. He was awarded honorary professorships.

Man, which later spoke of how "the greatest specialist of his time in the field of synthetic organic chemistry and structural", V. made his first contribution to the chemistry, as a consultant "Polaroid Corporation" during the Second World War. The war has caused shortages of quinine, a valuable anti-malarial drug that is also used in the manufacture of lenses. With standard equipment and readily available materials, B. and his colleague William E. Doering in 1944 for the first time synthesized quinine after only 14 months of operation. Characteristically, the method was that B. to begin with and a simple molecule, adding or removing carbon atoms, form the basis of the desired product. He then "tie" side groups needed to complete the structure of the molecule. In the case of quinine in the process used to create the 17 transformations carbon structure and many reactions to reproduce the natural properties of quinine.

Three years later, in collaboration with the organic chemist KG B. Schramm created a protein analog, linking amino acid link in a long chain. The resulting polypeptides that have been used in the production of plastics and synthetic antibiotics, have become a valuable tool for the study of protein metabolism. In 1951, B. led the first research group, which began in the synthesis of steroids. An example of an extremely complex structure can serve as cholesterol and cortisone. B. continued to seemingly impossible syntheses, some of which, such as the synthesis of strychnine, so far, failed to repeat. Among the compounds, which it received, were chlorophyll, lanosterol, lysergic acid, reserpine, prostaglandin F2a, colchicine and vitamin B12.

Part of this work has been carried out in the Woodward Research Institute in Basel (Switzerland), which was established in 1963. "Ciba Corporation" (now "Shiba Haze Corporation"). The Institute was named in honor of the scientist, he was its director, combining this post with the work at Harvard University. Under his leadership, academics and members of the Institute have synthesized many compounds that have been used in the industry. One of the most significant of these compounds was nefalosporin C, penicillin type antibiotic used against infections caused by bacteria. V. died without completing the work on the synthesis of the antibiotic erythromycin.

Although VA is best known for his work on the synthesis, his contributions to organic chemistry is much broader and more fundamental. When he began his academic career, the principles of organic chemistry has been firmly established. They were known tetrahedral carbon structure, nature attached to it side chains and their reactivity. The basis of the analysis of the classical methods were unknown substances, which take their origin in the XIX century. After the compound was decomposed into components and these components are identified on the basis of reactions in which a substance enters, they concluded its structure.

B. made a revolution in the application of methods of physical chemistry. He used the theory of electronic structure of molecules for analysis of reaction mechanism and prediction of yield of the final products, which is absolutely necessary in organic synthesis planning. Scientist popularized the use of spectroscopy for faster and more precise clarification of the molecular structure. The rule, which establishes the relationship between the ultraviolet range, number and type of bonds between carbon atoms, and side groups, bears his name. In collaboration with Roald Hoffmann B. formulated based on the rules of quantum mechanics, the conservation of orbital symmetry for harmonized chemical reactions (when the formation of chemical bonds of atoms occurs during chemical reactions). This method has allowed VA to use the natural conditions that contribute to the reaction, for just such a molecule, what he needed.

In 1965, V. Nobel Prize in Chemistry "for his outstanding contribution to the art of organic synthesis" was awarded. In his opening speech on behalf of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences Arne Fredga since joked about the rule of Vladimir in the field of organic chemistry: "It is sometimes said that the organic synthesis is both an exact science, and fine art. There is an indisputable master - nature. But I dare say that the winner of this year, Dr. V. is occupied second place. "

In 1938 W. married Irzhe Pullman. The couple had two daughters. His second wife, Eudoxia Muller (the marriage took place in 1946), worked as a consultant in the "Polaroid Corporation." They had a son and a daughter. A brilliant and inspirational speaker, V. does not usually use the records or notes. Together with Robert Robinson, he founded the magazine Organic Chemistry "Tetrahedron