• Hervé Bourhy
  • Annick Perrot
  • Jean-Marc Cavaillon


Born in Dole, France, in 1822, Pasteur was a trailblazer in the study of microorganisms and went on to become one of the most influential thinkers in the history of science. While his development of the first laboratory-attenuated human vaccine – against rabies – is well known, this major discovery was only one remarkable episode in a long and productive career that spanned numerous scientific arenas. The first 10 years of his professional life were devoted to studying the deflection of polarized light by organic substances and the relationships between this property, crystalline structure, and molecular configuration. In so doing, he would establish the foundations of a new science, stereochemistry, and describe a novel yet general law of physiochemistry: organic molecules are asymmetric. He recognized that the laws of asymmetry influenced the function of molecules and, therefore, were essential to the mechanisms of life; in their discovery, Pasteur illuminated the path for advances in biology. Thus, by the time he was in his mid-20’s, Pasteur’s accomplishments foretold his accession to the ranks of the great men of science.


Virulent Rabies Rabies Vaccine Human Rabies Smallpox Vaccine Anthrax Vaccine 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hervé Bourhy
    • 1
  • Annick Perrot
    • 2
  • Jean-Marc Cavaillon
    • 3
  1. 1.UPRE Lyssavirus Dynamics and Host Adaptation, National Reference Centre for RabiesWHO Collaborative Centre for Reference and Research on Rabies, Institut PasteurParis, Cedex 15France
  2. 2.Institut PasteurParisFrance
  3. 3.Cytokines and Inflammation Unit, Institut PasteurParisFrance

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