Sir (Walter) Norman Haworth

Location: Second Floor, West Wing, North Wall, Sequence 3

Source: Dr. A. J. Waring, the Chemistry Department, University of Birmingham (UK)

Sponsor: Family of Homer T. Haworth (no relation)

Haworth made basic contributions to carbohydrate chemistry. He introduced, in 1925, the correct cyclic model for glucose, and structures of other monosaccharides (mannose, galactose, fructose) were soon added. These were followed by structural work on disaccharides (maltose, cellobiose, lactose) and eventually the polysaccharides starch, cellulose, inulin, glycogen and xylan. Haworth also established the correct structure of Vitamin C (which he named ascorbic acid), and his synthesis constituted the first synthesis of any vitamin. Haworth was awarded the 1937 Nobel Prize in Chemistry (shared with Paul Karrer) for his research on carbohydrates and Vitamin C. He was the first British organic chemist to receive the Nobel.