Other Free Encyclopedias » Online Encyclopedia » Encyclopedia - Featured Articles » Contributed Topics from A-E

Boussingault, Jean-Baptiste Joseph

chemistry agricultural air nitrogen

[boosigoh] (1802–87) French chemist: pioneer of experimental agricultural chemistry.

After a school career lacking distinction, Boussingault entered the École des Mines at Saint-Étienne and soon after graduation was employed to direct a mine in Venezuela. During his 10 years there he travelled and reported on the geology and geography of the area to the Institut de France, and on his return was appointed professor of chemistry   at Lyon. His main work afterwards was in agricultural chemistry. He showed that legumes (peas, beans, etc) can secure nitrogen from the air (actually via root bacteria), whereas most plants, and all animals, cannot secure nitrogen from the air and must obtain it from their food. His work on the nutritional value of foods opened an area of study which later led to major discoveries on metabolism and on the vitamins. He found iodine in salt deposits claimed by South American natives to be curative for goitre, which led him to suggest the use of iodine in treatment, but this was not taken up for many years.

Bouteflika, Abdelaziz (1937–) - PERSONAL HISTORY, After the Coup, BIOGRAPHICAL HIGHLIGHTS, PERSONAL CHRONOLOGY:, Return from Exile, Bouteflika as President [next] [back] Bousfield, Midian O.(1885–1948) - Physician, business executive, Chronology, Seizes Opportunities to Serve

User Comments

Your email address will be altered so spam harvesting bots can't read it easily.
Hide my email completely instead?

Cancel or