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Profile of the Day: Linus Pauling

On this day in 1901, chemist and activist Linus Pauling was born in Portland, Oregon. Regarded as one of the most influential scientists in history, Pauling is often considered to be the founder of the fields of quantum chemistry and molecular biology.

Image: Linus Pauling / Smithsonian Institution, Flickr

The eldest child of Herman Henry Pauling and Lucy Darling, Pauling showed an interest in science at a young age. He contributed many discoveries across several scientific fields. The father of microbiology, Pauling’s studies of hemoglobin led to his discovery of sickle cell anemia as a molecular disease.

In addition to his groundbreaking scientific work, Pauling was also a passionate activist for peace. He spoke publicly about the dangers of nuclear war and against nuclear arms.

Did you know that Pauling is the only person in history to have received two unshared Nobel Prizes? He received the Noble Prize in Chemistry in 1954 for his contributions to the scientific field. In 1962, he was awarded a second Nobel Prize for peace for his work to ban the testing of nuclear weapons. He is also one of two people to be awarded Nobel Prizes in different fields, the other being physicist Marie Curie.

Explore Linus Pauling’s family tree on Geni and discover how you’re related!

View Linus Pauling’s Geni Profile

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