Albert Neuberger

Albert Neuberger
Born (1908-04-15)15 April 1908
Hassfurt, Bavaria
Died 14 August 1996(1996-08-14) (aged 88)
Hampstead, London, England
Nationality British
Institutions University of Cambridge
Alma mater University of Würzburg
University College London
Doctoral advisor Charles Robert Harington
Doctoral students Frederick Sanger
Notable awards Fellow of the Royal Society[1]
Children Michael Neuberger
James Neuberger
David Neuberger
Anthony Neuberger

Albert Neuberger CBE FRCP[2][1] (15 April 1908 – 14 August 1996)[2] was Professor of Chemical Pathology, St Mary's Hospital, 1955–1973, and later Emeritus Professor.[3][4][5][6]

Education in Germany

Born in Hassfurt, northern Bavaria, the first of the three children of Max Neuberger (1877–1931), cloth merchant and businessman, and Bertha, née Hiller (1888–1974), both religious Jews.[7] He studied medicine at the University of Würzburg where he was awarded a summa cum laude medical degree.[8] He also took courses in chemistry there and also attended lectures given by Karl Bonhöffer, the outstanding psychiatrist and neurologist. He also worked for a while in research in Berlin where he began a life long friendship with Ernst Chain. Chain shared the 1945 Nobel prize with Alexander Fleming and Howard Florey for their work on penicillin.

Education and career in England

Neuberger foresaw Hitler's persecution of the Jews after he came to power in 1933, and, as with numerous other Jewish intellectuals (including Chain), he fled to London. He received a PhD from the University of London (UCL) after attending UCL Medical School under Professor Sir Charles Robert Harington[8] FRS in 1936 and continued research there. At the start of the Second World War he moved to the Department of Biochemistry at the University of Cambridge where he took on Fred Sanger as his PhD student. They published a paper together on the nitrogen content of potatoes.[9] In 1942 he moved back to London to work at the National Institute for Medical Research. During the war, he spent some time in India as a consultant in nutrition to the army. From 1950–1955 he was Head of Biochemistry at the National Institute for Medical Research. He then moved to St Mary's Hospital as Professor.

He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1951,[1] as was his son, Michael Neuberger, in 1993—a rare case of both father and son being FRS. He was awarded a CBE in 1964. He was also a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and the Royal Society of Chemistry. Other awards include the Heberden medal of the Royal Society of Medicine (1959), the Frederick Gowland Hopkins medal of the Biochemical Society (1960) and of which he was elected an honorary member (1973). He was also a foreign honorary member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (1972). He received honorary doctorates from the University of Aberdeen (1967), the Hebrew University of Jerusalem (1968), and the University of Hull (1981).[2]

He married Lilian(sic) Dreyfus in 1943 and was the father of James Neuberger, David Neuberger, Baron Neuberger of Abbotsbury, Anthony Neuberger,[10] Professor of Finance, University of Warwick and Michael Neuberger. He was also the brother of Rabbi Herman Neuberger.

See also


  1. 1 2 3 Allen, A. K.; Muir, H. M. (2001). "Albert Neuberger. 15 April 1908 -- 14 August 1996: Elected F.R.S. 1951". Biographical Memoirs of Fellows of the Royal Society. 47: 369–382. doi:10.1098/rsbm.2001.0021. PMID 15124648.
  2. 1 2 3 Sharon, Nathan (2004). "Neuberger, Albert (1908–1996), biochemist". The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/61494.
  3. Sharon, N.; Barzu, T.; Herault, J. P.; Herbert, J. M. (1997). "Obituary". Glycobiology. 7 (3): 323–327. doi:10.1093/glycob/7.3.323-b. PMID 9147040.
  4. Sharon, N. (1997). "Albert Neuberger (1908-96): Founder of modern glycoprotein research". Glycobiology. 7 (3): x–xiii. doi:10.1093/glycob/7.3.323-c. PMID 9147039.
  5. Sharon, N. (1997). "Albert Neuberger (1908-96): Founder of modern glycoprotein research". Glycoconjugate journal. 14 (2): 155–158. PMID 9111132.
  6. Allen, A. K.; Palmer, T. N. (1979). "Glycoproteins: A tribute to Albert Neuberger". Biochemical Society Transactions. 7 (4): 781–782. doi:10.1042/bst0070781. PMID 383551.
  7. Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, OUP 2004, ISBN 0-19-861411-X
  8. 1 2 "Transcript of Prof. Albert Neuberger in conversation with Prof. Robin Marshall and Dr. George Tait, December 1989, with link to download option via Athens login. Covers his entire life in some detail including time in Berlin and early experience of London". Retrieved 22 May 2010.
  9. Neuberger, A.; Sanger, F. (1942), "The nitrogen of the potato", Biochemical Journal, 36: 662–671, PMC 1266851Freely accessible, PMID 16747571.
  10. "University of Warwick Business school, faculty members.". Retrieved 13 July 2008.


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