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August 5, 1925 |
|Alma mater||ETH Zurich|
|Doctoral advisor||Lavoslav Ružička|
|Known for||vitamin B12(along with Woodward)|
|Notable awards||Marcel Benoist Prize (1972)
Davy Medal (1978)
In the early 1960s, Eschenmoser began work on what was the most complex natural product synthesized at the time—vitamin B12. In a remarkable collaboration with his colleague Robert Burns Woodward at Harvard University, a team of almost one hundred students and postdoctoral workers worked for many years on the synthesis of this molecule. The work was finally published in 1973, and it marked a landmark in the history of organic chemistry.
Threose nucleic acid is an artificial genetic polymer invented by Albert Eschenmoser. TNA strings composed of repeating threose sugars linked together by phosphodiester bonds. Like DNA and RNA, TNA can store genetic information in strings of nucleotide sequences (G, A, C, and T). A researcher at the Center for Evolutionary Medicine, John Chaput, has theorized that issues concerning the prebiotic synthesis of ribose sugars and the non-enzymatic replication of RNA may provide circumstantial evidence of an earlier genetic system more readily produced under primitive earth conditions. TNA could have been an early pre dna genetic system.
- Core Prize of the ETH Zurich (1949)
- Werner Prize of the Swiss Chemical Society
- Ruzicka Prize of the ETH Zurich (1958)
- Ernest Guenther Award (1966)
- Austrian Cross of Honour for Science and Art (1974)
- Welch Award (1974)
- Davy Medal (1978)
- Tetrahedron Prize for Creativity in Organic Chemistry (1981)
- Arthur C. Cope Award (1984) 
- Wolf Prize of the Wolf Foundation, Tel Aviv, Israel (1986)
- Nakanishi Prize (1998)
- Oparin Medal (2002)
- Frank H. Westheimer Medal (Harvard University, 2004)
- F.A. Cotton Medal for Excellence in Chemical Research of the American Chemical Society
- Paul Karrer Gold Medal (University of Zurich, 2008)
- Benjamin Franklin Medal in Chemistry from the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 2008 
- Honorary doctorates (Dr. hc) from the University of Fribourg (Switzerland, 1966), University of Chicago (USA, 1966), University of Edinburgh (United Kingdom, 1979), University of Bologna (Italy, 1989), Johann Wolfgang Goethe University (Frankfurt am Main, 1990), Louis Pasteur University (France, 1991), Harvard University (USA, 1993), Scripps Research Institute (USA, 2000) and the University of Innsbruck (Austria, 2010).
- A. Eschenmoser, L. Ruzicka, O. Jeger, D. Arigoni (1955). "Zur Kenntnis der Triterpene. 190. Mitteilung. Eine stereochemische Interpretation der biogenetischen Isoprenregel bei den Triterpenen". Helvetica Chimica Acta (in German) 38 (7): 1890–1904. doi:10.1002/hlca.19550380728.
- Erik J. Sorensen (2000). "Albert Eschenmoser". Helvetica Chimica Acta 83 (8): 1673–1677. doi:10.1002/1522-2675(20000809)83:8<1673::AID-HLCA1673>3.0.CO;2-I.