Wolf Prize Laurate in Chemistry 1978
Affiliation at the time of the award:
Stanford University, USA
“for his work in bioorganic chemistry, application of new spectroscopic techniques, and his support of international cooperation”.
Professsor Carl Djerassi’s work has had a unique impact on science, technology, and the betterment of mankind. He synthesized the first oral contraceptive, 19- norethindrone, which is the active ingredient in more than half of all oral contraceptives, the most widely used form of birth control in the world. His scientific work has been reported in over 800 published articles and books on synthetic organic chemistry. He has pioneered the use of various physical tools for the elucidation of the structure of organic molecules. He has been effective in translating scientific knowledge into technological practice. He has been responsible for important international scientific cooperative efforts between the United States Mexico, Brazil, Zaire, Kenya, and other countries, involving the creation of new research groups and institutions in chemistry and other fields of science and technology.
He is chairman of the United States National Academy of Science Board on Science and Technology in International Development and has been the driving force in recent Pugwash Conferences on the search for solutions to the world´s population growth problems. For all these contributions to science, to industry, and to humanity, Carl Djerassi is awarded the first Wolf Foundation Prize for Chemistry.