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"Yet because he lived, you may be alive and are well today"

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Yellapragada Subbarow (12 January 1895 – 8 August 1948 ) was an Indian biochemist who discovered the function of adenosine triphosphate as an energy source in the cell, and developed methotrexate for the treatment of cancer. Most of his career was spent in the United States. Despite his isolation of ATP, Subbarow was denied tenure at Harvard though he would lead some of America's most important medical research during World War II. Subbarow died in the United States. Subbarow is also credited with the first synthesis of the chemical compounds folic acid and methotrexate.

He was born in Bhimavaram, Madras Presidency, now in West Godavari District, Andhra Pradesh in India.

Subbarow's colleague, George Hitchings, who shared the 1988 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine with Gertrude Elion, said, "Some of the nucleotides isolated by Subbarow had to be rediscovered years later by other workers because Fiske, apparently, did not let Subbarow's contributions see the light of the day."

A fungus genus was named Subbaromyces in his honor.

Writing in the April 1950 issue of Argosy, Doron K. Antrim observed, "You've probably never heard of Dr. Yellapragada Subbarow. Yet because he lived you may be alive and are well today. Because he lived you may live longer."

Under Subbarow, Benjamin Duggar made his discovery of the world's first tetracycline antibiotic, aureomycin, in 1945. This discovery was made as a result of the largest distributed scientific experiment ever performed to that date, when American soldiers who had fought all over the world were instructed at the end of WWII to collect soil samples from wherever they were, and bring the samples back for screening at Lederle Laboratories for possible anti-bacterial agents produced by natural soil fungi

Source : Google, Wiki

Categories: Great minds

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