Louis Pasteur's Death Anniversary: All you need to know about French chemist and microbiologist

Louis Pasteur's Death Anniversary: All you need to know about French chemist and microbiologist

FPJ Web DeskUpdated: Tuesday, September 27, 2022, 05:54 PM IST
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Louis Pasteur | istockphoto

Louis Pasteur was (born on December 27, 1822 died, 28 September 1895), was a French chemist and microbiologist considered the most important founder of medical microbiology.

Louis Pasteur contributed to many new studies in the fields of science, technology and medicine. He pioneered the study of molecular asymmetry. He discovered that microorganisms cause fermentation and disease.

He received his degree in art in 1840 and science in 1842 from the Royal University of Besancon.

He saved the French beer, wine and silk industries. He developed vaccines against anthrax and rabies.

His most notable research:

Molecular Asymmetry

For a decade Pasteur studied the ability of organic matter to rotate the plane of polarized light. He also studied the relationships that exist between crystal structure and molecular arrangement. His research convinced him that asymmetry is one of the fundamental characteristics of living things.

Germ theory of fermentation. Pasteur studied a wide range of aspects of fermentation, including the production of compounds such as lactic acid, which are involved in the acidification of milk. He also studied butyric acid fermentation.

Pasteur effect:

HIs previous studies led Pasteur to the unexpected discovery that the fermentation process could be stopped by passing air (i.e. oxygen) through the fermentation broth, a process now known as the Pasteur effect. He concluded that this was due to the existence of life forms that function only in the absence of oxygen. The term 'anaerobic' was introduced. He further suggested that the phenomena that occur during spoilage are due to specific bacteria operating under anaerobic conditions.

However, Pasteur did not have enough time to examine all the practical aspects of his many theories. One of the main theoretical implications of his subsequent work, which he made clear from his vaccine attenuation process, is that virulence is not a constant attribute, but a changing property, that is, it can be lost and later recovered.

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