Chemists and chemistry have long been at the heart of efforts to preserve and restore good health by means of medicines. Where once medicines were discovered by trial and error, increasingly over time chemists and other scientists have made their discoveries on the basis of more and more detailed knowledge of biomolecules. In turn, a wide range of substances—from dyestuffs to mold juices to newer products of biotechnology—have been deployed to serve the purposes of relieving pain, preventing and treating infectious diseases, restoring and regulating the body’s biochemistry, and making accurate diagnoses.

Hear It Firsthand

The Center for Oral History captures and preserves the stories of notable figures in chemistry and related fields, with over 425 oral histories that deal with various aspects of science, of scientists, and of scientific practices. For more information please visit CHF’s Oral History Program or e-mail oralhistory@

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