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E. Newton Harvey

AKA Edmund Newton Harvey

Born: 25-Nov-1887
Birthplace: Germantown, PA
Died: 21-Jul-1959
Location of death: Woods Hole, MA
Cause of death: Heart Failure

Gender: Male
Race or Ethnicity: White
Sexual orientation: Straight
Occupation: Zoologist, Inventor

Nationality: United States
Executive summary: Light-emitting organisms

Physiologist and zoologist E. Newton Harvey studied under Thomas H. Morgan, and became America's foremost expert on bioluminescence -- animals that glow. He discovered that luciferins (light-emitting substances occurring in luminescent organisms, such as fireflies) and luciferases (enzymes that interact with luciferins) from different animals were species-specific, not interchangeable. He theorized that the inability to interchange luciferins and luciferases across species was evidence of evolution, as each species adapts to fit its specific needs. In 1922, using luciferins from dead crustaceans, he constructed a heat-less reading lamp. In 1931, collaborating with banker and part-time scientist Alfred Lee Loomis, he invented the centrifuge microscope.

Harvey founded the Journal of Cellular and Comparative Physiology, and is the namesake of two kinds of glowing bacteria (Achromobacter harveyi and Vibrio harveyi) and a species of firefly (Photinus harveyi). He was married to embryologist and cell biologist Ethel Browne Harvey, and for many years they shared facilities at Princeton and Woods Hole.

Father: (Christian minister, d. 1893)
Wife: Ethel Browne Harvey (embryologist, b. 1885, m. 12-Mar-1916, d. 1965, two sons)
Son: Edmund Newton Harvey, Jr. (chemist, b. 1916)
Son: Richard Harvey (physician, b. 1922)

    High School: Germantown Academy, Germantown, PA (1905)
    University: BS Biology, University of Pennsylvania (1909)
    University: PhD Zoology, Columbia University (1911)
    Teacher: Biology, Princeton University (1911-19)
    Professor: Biology, Princeton University (1919-59)
    Scholar: Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

    Rumford Prize 1947
    American Philosophical Society
    American Society of Naturalists
    American Society of Zoologists
    National Academy of Sciences
    National Research Council
    New York Academy of Sciences
    Philadelphia Academy of Natural Sciences

Author of books:
The Nature of Animal Light (1920)
Living Light (1940)
Bioluminescence (1952)

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