Title and Description Page
Family Background and Early Education 1
Family origins in The Netherlands. Immigration to England. Early education during World War II. Influence of older brother. Introduction to science in high school.
Undergraduate Education 5
Studies in chemistry at Edinburgh University. Burgeoning interest in biochemistry. Projected reunion of graduating class in honors chemistry. First paper with Gerald O. Aspinall on carbohydrate chemistry in plants. Influence of Edmond L. Hirst.
Graduate Education 9
Focus on heterocyclic chemistry. Ph.D. work with W. H. Stafford on heterocyclic analogs of azulene. Research on hydrazine. Award from Industrial Research Institute. Importance of anomalies in research.
National Research Council 12
Research in structural chemistry. Leadership of Leo E. Marion. Papers with Marion and O. E. Edwards on structures derived from alkaloids and plants. Research on the structure of hydroxylycoctonine.
Early Career at Lederle Laboratories 15
Decision to pursue career in industrial science. Interactions with Milon W. Bullock. Early research on insect molting hormone. Development of synthetic anabolic steroids and artificial insemination of cows. Attitude towards publication at Lederle.
Work on Prostaglandins at Edinburgh University 20
Move to Edinburgh University. Start of research program in prostaglandins. Reasons for return to industry.
Herbicide Development at American Cyanamid 22
Research on plant growth regulators (PGRs) and phthalimides. Development of imidazolinones, leading to Avenge. Random screening approach for new herbicides. Discovery of cyclohexyl derivative of phthalimides, leading to Assert, Arsenal, and Pursuit. Joint project with Molecular Genetics. Organizational expansion.
Later Career 38
Promotion to Senior Group Leader. Cyanamid's support of research and development. Influence of George J. Sella, Jr. Views on teamwork and managing creative people. Award of the National Medal of Technology.