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Adolf Windaus

Adolf WindausAKA Adolf Otto Reinhold Windaus

Born: 25-Dec-1876
Birthplace: Berlin, Germany
Died: 9-Jun-1959
Location of death: Göttingen, Germany
Cause of death: unspecified
Remains: Buried, Göttingen City Cemetery, Göttingen, Germany

Gender: Male
Race or Ethnicity: White
Sexual orientation: Straight
Occupation: Chemist

Nationality: Germany
Executive summary: Investigated cholesterol, Vitamin D

Military service: German Army (1899-1900)

German chemist Adolf Windaus studied the structure of cholesterol, and showed the relationship between steroids and vitamins. In 1919 his laboratory transformed cholesterol into cholanic acid (steroids comprising the bile acids, generally in conjugated form), and in 1926 he proved that the precursor of vitamin D is present in cholesterol, and is converted into vitamin D by exposure to sunlight. In 1928 he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Chemistry, and in 1932 he explained the chemical structure of the sterol ring common to all sterols. He also studied the structures of colchicine (an analgesic derived from saffron and used to treat gout) and thiamine (a B-complex vitamin that acts as a coenzyme necessary for the conversion of carbohydrates into glucose).

Father: Adolf Windaus
Mother: Margarete Elster
Wife: Elisabeth Geborene Resau (b. 1894, m. 1915, d. 1970, two sons, one daughter)
Son: Günter (b. 1916)
Son: Gustav (b. 1918)
Daughter: Margarete (b. 1921)

    High School: Französisches Gymnasium, Berlin, Germany
    Medical School: BS Medicine, University of Berlin (1897)
    University: MS Chemistry, University of Freiburg (1899)
    University: PhD Chemistry, University of Freiburg (1903)
    Teacher: Chemistry, University of Innsbruck (1906-13)
    Professor: Applied Medical Chemistry, University of Innsbruck (1913-15)
    Professor: Chemistry, University of Göttingen (1915-44)

    Nobel Prize for Chemistry 1928
    Pasteur Medal 1938
    Goethe Medal 1941
    Grand Order of Merit 1951
    Grand Order of Merit with Star 1956
    German Ancestry

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