Selected Topics in the History of Biochemistry

Selected Topics in the History of Biochemistry

Personal Recollections, Part I

1st Edition - January 1, 1983

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  • Editor: G. Semenza
  • eBook ISBN: 9780444598202

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Selected Topics in the History of Biochemistry: Personal Recollections, I presents selected topics in the history of biochemistry based on the authors' personal recollections. These topics range from the isolation of Cori ester and the discovery of sugar nucleotides to the work of Frederick Gowland Hopkins (1861-1947). Ion-coupled membrane processes are also discussed, along with fructose and fructose-2,6-bisphosphateas well as lysosomes and glycogen. Comprised of 12 chapters, this volume begins with the discovery of Cori ester and the concept of phosphorolysis before turning to the discovery of sugar nucleotides and research on ion-coupled membrane processes. The reader is then introduced to studies of fructose, fructose-2,6-bisphosphate, lysosomes, and glycogen; the contributions of Frederick Gowland Hopkins in biochemistry; and a short autobiography of Juda Hirsch Quastel, with emphasis on his research work on the concept of active centers as a possible explanation of enzyme action and his investigation of the effects of malonic acid and substituted malonic acids on bacterial dehydrogenases. The remaining chapters focus on a biochemist's approach to autopharmacology; the early development of modern protein chemistry in Uppsala, Sweden; and the biographies of two Russian scientists, A. N. Bach and Sergei E. Severin. This monograph will be of interest to students, practitioners, and researchers in the field of biochemistry.

Table of Contents

  • Selected Topics in the History of Biochemistry Personal Recollections. I.

    General Preface

    Preface to Volume 35

    Contributors to this volume

    List of Plates


    Chapter 1. The Isolation of Cori-Ester, "The Saint Louis Gateway" to a First Approach of a Dynamic Formulation of Macromolecular Biosynthesis

    The Coris in Post-World War I Europe

    The Coris in the U.S.A.

    Research at Washington University, School of Medicine

    The Discovery of Cori-Ester and the Concept of Phosphorolysis

    Polysaccharide Synthesis in Vitro

    Isolation of Crystalline Muscle Phosphorylase Catalyzing Amylose Synthesis

    Phosphorylases α and β and their Role in Metabolic Regulation

    Regulation of Phosphorylase in Resting and Contracting Muscle

    1947 Nobel Prize for Physiology and Medicine

    The Effect of Hormones on Carbohydrate Metabolism in Vitro

    Personal Data from Later Years



    Chapter 2. The Discovery of Sugar Nucleotides

    The Discovery of Sugar Nucleotides

    1948-49 Glucose Diphosphate

    1950 UDPG

    1951 UDP-Galactose

    1952 UDP-Acetylglucosamine

    1953-55 UDP-Glucuronic Acid

    1953 Biosynthesis of Disaccarides

    Final Remarks


    Chapter 3. The Road to Ion-Coupled Membrane Processes

    Washington College



    A Year with Fritz Lipmann

    A Decade with Carl Cori


    Metabolite Regulation of Glucolysis

    A Regulatory Site for Glucose-6-Phosphate

    Membrane Transport

    Toward the Mechanism of Glucose Active Transport

    Fall of the Phosphorylation-Dephosphorylation Hypothesis


    A Group Transfer Reaction with Glucose is Not the Mechanism

    Energy Transduction is at the Brush-Border Membrane

    The Idea of Na+-Coupling

    The First Model, Convective-Coupling

    Coupling by Co-Transport




    Chapter 4. From Fructose to Fructose-2,6-Bisphosphate with a Detour through Lysosomes and Glycogen

    As a Medical Student, I Participated in the Rediscovery Of Glucagon

    How the Agglutination of Microsomes at pH5 Opened the Way to Several Discoveries

    The Metabolism of Fructose in the Liver

    The ATP-Magnesium Complex

    The Publication of the Sorbitol Pathway was Delayed by Thermodynamica Considerations

    A Call from a Paediatrician Introduced Me Into Glycogen Storage Disease

    The First Lysosomal Disease was Discovered Because of the Complexity of the Reaction Catalysed by Amylo-l,6-Glucosidase

    The Concept of Inborn Lysosomal Disease is a Logical Deduction Made from My Observations in Type II Glycogenosis

    It Took 10 Years to have the Concept of Inborn Lysosomal Diseases Accepted

    The Hepatic Threshold to Glucose

    Fructose Revisited with a Glance to Primary Gout

    The Futile Cycles and the Discovery of Fructose-2,6-Bisphosphate

    The Other Face of the Story


    Chapter 5. Sir Frederick Gowland Hopkins (1861-1947)

    Character and Outlook

    Education and Early Employment

    Establishment of Biochemistry in Cambridge


    Purines and Pterins



    Muscular Contraction


    Some Biographical Points


    Chapter 6. A Short Autobiography

    The War 1917-1919


    Concept of Active Centers as a Possible Explanation of Enzyme Action

    The Effects of Malonic Acid and Substituted Malonic Acids on Bacterial Dehydrogenases


    Rothamsted Experimental Station




    Chapter 7. A Biochemist's Approach to Autopharmacology


    Early influences

    Medical Studies and the Role of Biochemistry

    The Status of Biochemistry as an Academic Subject

    Biochemistry in Dahlem and Heidelberg

    England in the Nineteen-Twenties and -Thirties

    Humoral Transmission and the Catecholamines

    Amine oxidases

    Biogenesis of Adrenaline

    Intracellular Localization of the Catecholamines

    On Methods

    Conclusions: The Amine-Forming Cells



    Chapter 8. The Svedberg and Arne Tiselius. The Early Development of Modern Protein Chemistry at Uppsala

    The Svedberg

    The Optical Centrifuge

    The First Ultracentrifuge

    The High-Speed Oil-Turbine Ultracentrifuge

    Svedberg's Molecular Weight Hypothesis

    Arne Tiselius

    Further Development of the High-Speed Ultracentrifuge

    Further Protein Studies

    Serum and Serum Proteins

    The Separation Cell

    Ultracentrifuges to Go Abroad

    The Later Periods In Svedberg's Life

    Chromatography of Colourless Substances

    The Two Personalities

    In Retrospect


    Chapter 9. Survey of a French Biochemist's Life

    My Grandparents and my Parents

    High School and University Studies

    First Contact with Biochemistry and Research

    My Return to Lyon and World War II

    Life in Marseille (Act I)


    Chemistry and Physiochemistry of Lipids

    Construction of Our First Institue at the University

    Life in Marseille (Act II)

    Interlude in Paris

    Creation of a Second Research Center (C.N.R.S.)

    Proteolytic Enzymes and Zymogens (Second Period)

    Bovine Procarboxypeptidase

    The Lipase-Colipase System (Second Period)


    Chapter 10. From α-Corticotropin through β-Lipotropin to β-Endorphin

    Hormone Research Laboratory

    Chemical Messengers

    α-Corticotropin (ACTH)

    Peptide Synthesis



    Concluding Remarks



    Chapter 11. A.N. Bach, Founder of the Soviet School of Biochemistry

    Short Biography



    Chapter 12. Sergei E. Severin: Life and Scientific Activity

    An Autobiographical Review


    Name Index

Product details

  • Language: English
  • Copyright: © Elsevier Science 1983
  • Published: January 1, 1983
  • Imprint: Elsevier Science
  • eBook ISBN: 9780444598202

About the Editor

G. Semenza

Affiliations and Expertise

Swiss Institute of Technology, ETH-Zentrum, Zürich, Switzerland

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