Today in history: Lafayette Mendel

in history •  last year

Hello Steemians!

Welcome to today's episode of the "Today in History" serial, where I bring you daily historical facts and events of the current date.

On February 5. 1872. the American biochemist Lafayette Benedict Mendel was born.

He was born in Delhi in New York into a merchant family originated from Germany.
At the age of 15 he won a scholarship from the New York State and began studying classics, economics, humanities, biology and chemistry at the Yale University.
He graduated in 1891. and begun the studies of physiological chemistry for his Ph.D. mentored by Russell Henry Chittenden,
where he researched edestin extracted from hemp seeds, successfully finishing it only two years late in 1893.

  • Russell Henry Chittenden*

In 1903. he begun working as a professor at the Sheffield Scientific School, the Yale Graduate and Medicine School.
Together with his partner Thomas Burr Osborne, he wrote over 100 papers on the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station.
Their most important work was their study about a healthy diet on rats.
The duo discovered vitamin B, one of the important growth factors, in milk in the year 1910.
However their most important discovery is the one of the Vitamin A in butter fat in 1913.
They were named the fathers of Nutrition

In 1913. he was made a member of the National Academy of Science.
He published many articles and two books, Changes in the Food Supply and Their Relation to Nutrition in 1916. and Nutrition, the Chemistry of Life in 1923.

Mendel was made a Sterling Professor, the highest academic rank at Yale University, in 1921.
In 1927. he won the American Institute of Chemists Gold Medal for his contribution to chemistry and in 1935. the Conné Medal of the Chemists Club of New York for his contribution to medicine.

Yale University

Lafayette Benedict Mendel died, on December 9. 1935. of a heart condition at the age of 63.

Thank you all for reading.
Hope you enjoyed this brief introduction of one of the fathers of nutrition!


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