He studied in Leipzig and Heidelberg, and in 1852 became a lecturer of physiology at the University of Leipzig. In 1853 he became an associate professor to the medical faculty at Leipzig, and in 1860 a professor of physiology at the University of Freiburg. One of his better known students at Leipzig was physiologist Karl Ewald Konstantin Hering (1834-1918).
In 1851 Otto Funke was the first scientist to successfully crystallize hemoglobin ((German): "Hämoglobinkristalle"), which he first called "Blutfarbstoff". This work was a precursor to Felix Hoppe-Seyler's important studies of hemoglobin. Funke also performed research of blood formation in the spleen, and investigations into the effects of curare.
- Lehrbuch der Physiologie (7. Aufl. von Grünhagen, Hamburg 1884)
- Atlas der physiologischen Chemie (Leipzig 1853, 2. Aufl. 1858), Supplement to Carl Lehmann's Lehrbuch der physiologischen Chemie
- Kapitel über den Tastsinn und die Gemeingefühle. In: Ludimar Hermann's Handbuch der Physiologie (Bd. 3, Leipzig 1880)
- Catalogus Professorum lipsiensium Biographical sketch
- A NASA Recipe For Protein Crystallography
- Parts of the article are based on an equivalent article at the German Wikipedia.
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