Emil Adolf von Behring

About Emil Adolf von Behring

Who is it?: German physiologist
Birth Day: March 15, 1854
Birth Place: Ławice, German
Died On: 31 March 1917(1917-03-31) (aged 63)\nMarburg, Hesse-Nassau
Birth Sign: Aries
Known for: Diphtheria antitoxin/serum
Awards: Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine (1901)
Fields: Physiology, immunology
Notable students: Hans Schlossberger

Emil Adolf von Behring Net Worth

Emil Adolf von Behring was bornon March 15, 1854 in Ławice, German, is German physiologist. Emil Adolf Behring was a renowned German physiologist who was the first recipient of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. Born to a family of moderate means, Emil was at the verge of pursuing a career in theology but in a fateful turn of events he was able to earn a scholarship to the military medical institution. After completing his education he served for the mandated ten years, initially as an assistant surgeon. He also contributed much of his time to research and began studying the disinfectant iodoform. He studied the effects the disinfectant has on toxins released by microorganisms and ascribed its action as anti-toxic rather than being microbicidal. He then moved to Bonn where he trained under Carl Binz, a renowned German physician. Binz guided Behring on the finer nuances of conducting experiments on microorganisms and toxicology. This inquiring mind then set about developing an antitoxin for the widespread epidemic of diphtheria. He collaborated with Shibasaburo Kitasato and conducted research on rat species immune to tetanus thus making a ground-breaking discovery. The serum obtained from the immune species when injected into a patient afflicted with tetanus, created resistance against the disease in the latter. This discovery earned him a Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. Read on to know more about his life and works.
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Biography/Timeline

1874

Between 1874 and 1878, he studied Medicine at the Akademie für das militärärztliche Bildungswesen, Berlin. He was mainly a military Doctor and then became Professor of Hygienics within the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Marburg (against the initial strenuous opposition of the faculty council), a position he would hold for the rest of his life. He and the Pharmacologist Hans Horst Meyer had their laboratories in the same building, and Behring stimulated Meyer's interest in the mode of action of tetanus toxin.

1890

Behring was the discoverer of diphtheria antitoxin in 1890 and attained a great reputation by that means and by his contributions to the study of immunity. He won the first Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1901 for the development of serum therapies against diphtheria (which Kitasato Shibasaburo and Emile Roux also contributed to) and tetanus. The former had been a scourge of the population, especially children, whereas the other was a leading cause of death in wars, killing the wounded. He was elected a Foreign Honorary Member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1902. At the International Tuberculosis Congress in 1905 he announced that he had discovered "a substance proceeding from the virus of tuberculosis." This substance, which he designated "T C," plays the important part in the immunizing action of Professor Behring's "bovivaccine", which prevents bovine tuberculosis. He tried unsuccessfully to obtain a protective and therapeutic agent for humans.

1896

In December 1896, Behring married the then twenty-year-old Else Spinola (1876-1936), who was a daughter of Bernhard Spinola, the Director of the Charité hospital in Berlin, and a Jewish-born mother - Elise Spinola, born Bendix - who had converted to Christianity upon her marriage. They had six sons. They held their honeymoon at villa "Behring" on Capri 1897, where Behring owned a vacation home. In 1909–1911, the Russian Writer Maxim Gorky lived at this villa.

1901

Von Behring is believed to have cheated Paul Ehrlich out of recognition and financial reward in relation to collaborative research in diphtheria. The two men developed a diphtheria serum by repeatedly injecting the deadly toxin into a horse. The serum was used effectively during an epidemic in Germany. A chemical company preparing to undertake commercial production and marketing of the diphtheria serum offered a contract to both men, but von Behring maneuvered to claim all the considerable financial rewards for himself. To add insult to injury, only Behring received the first Nobel Prize in Medicine, in 1901, for his contributions.

1917

Behring died at Marburg, Hessen-Nassau, on 31 March 1917. His name survived with the Dade Behring, organisation, at the time, the world's largest company dedicated solely to clinical diagnostics, (now part of the Siemens Health care Division) in CSL Behring a manufacturer of plasma-derived biotherapies, in Behringwerke AG in Marburg, in Novartis Behring and in the Emil von Behring Prize of the University of Marburg, the highest endowed Medicine award in Germany.