Gerhard Domagk

Gerhard Domagk Gerhard Johannes Paul Domagk (; 30 October 1895 – 24 April 1964) was a German pathologist and bacteriologist.

He is credited with the discovery of sulfonamidochrysoidine (KL730) as an antibiotic for which he received the 1939 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. The drug became the first commercially available antibiotic and marketed under the brand name Prontosil.

While working in the pathology department of the University of Münster, Domagk was invited to join the IG Farben branch at Elberfeld (later Wuppertal) in 1927. His duty was to test chemical compounds prepared at the IG Farben laboratory for potential drugs. A novel compound synthesised by Friedrich Mietzsch and Joseph Klarer, a benzene derivative of azo dye attached with sulphonamide group as a side chain was found to have antibacterial activity against human bacterium ''Streptococcus pyogenes.'' In 1935, Domagk's only daughter, Hildegarde, injured herself and contracted a streptococcal infection. In a desperate attempt to save his daughter's arm from amputation and her life, Domagk used the new compound that eventually cured the infection. Given the brand name Prontosil, the new drug became the first antibiotic commercially available for bacterial infections.

Domagk was chosen to receive the 1939 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine "for the discovery of the antibacterial effects of prontosil," but the Nazi government prohibited him from receiving the award. In 1947, after the fall of Nazi Germany, he was officially given the Nobel diploma and delivered the Nobel lecture. Provided by Wikipedia
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