80th Birthday: Ekkehard Winterfeldt

80th Birthday: Ekkehard Winterfeldt

Author: ChemViews

Ekkehard Winterfeldt celebrates his 80th birthday on May 13, 2012. Winterfeldt is a highly respected chemist in the field of organic synthesis and natural products. His research focused on alkaloid synthesis and he developed several novel total syntheses, including the Cu(II)-catalyzed synthesis of cytotoxic quinoline alkaloid, Camptothecin, which is used in cancer treatment.

Ekkehard Winterfeldt studied chemistry at the Technical University Braunschweig, Germany, and gained his Ph.D. there in 1958 on the synthesis of hydroxysparteines. In 1959, Winterfeldt joined the faculty at the Technical University Berlin, Germany, as a research assistant working on naturally occurring thiophene derivatives for his Habilitation, which he completed in 1967. In 1970, he moved to become a full professor at the University of Hanover, Germany, now Leibniz University of Hanover.
He remained at Hanover until his retirement in 2000, during which time he served as Institute Director and Head of the Department of Chemistry for the university as well as Board Member and President of the Gesellschaft Deutscher Chemiker (GDCh, German Chemical Society) from 1996–1997.

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