Corwin Hansch

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Corwin Hansch
Born Corwin Herman Hansch
(1918-10-06)October 6, 1918
Kenmare, North Dakota
Died May 8, 2011(2011-05-08) (aged 92)
Claremont, California
Nationality American
Fields Organic Chemistry
Institutions Pomona College
Manhattan Project
Alma mater University of Illinois
New York University
Notable awards Tolman Award (1975)
Spouse Gloria J. Hansch (nee Tomasulo) (m.1945?–2011) (his death) (1 child)

Corwin Herman Hansch (October 6, 1918 – May 8, 2011[1]) was a Professor of Chemistry at Pomona College in California. He became known as the 'father of computer-assisted molecule design.'

Early life and childhood[edit]

He was born on October 6, 1918 in Kenmare, North Dakota.


He earned a B.S. from the University of Illinois in 1940 and a Ph.D. from New York University in 1944.


Hansch taught Organic Chemistry for many years at Pomona College, and was known for giving complex lectures without using notes. His course in Physical Bio-Organic Medicinal Chemistry was ground-breaking at an undergraduate level.

Hansch may be best known as the father of the concept of quantitative structure-activity relationship (QSAR), the quantitative correlation of the physicochemical properties of molecules with their biological activities.

He is also noted for the Hansch equation, which is used in

  • Multivariate Statistics - Multivariate statistics is a set of statistical tools to analyse data (e.g., chemical and biological) matrices using regression and/or pattern recognition techniques.
  • Hansch Analysis - Hansch analysis is the investigation of the quantitative relationship between the biological activity of a series of compounds and their physicochemical substituent or global parameters representing hydrophobic, electronic, steric and other effects using multiple regression correlation methodology.
  • Hansch-Fujita \pi constant - The Hansch-Fujita \pi constant describes the contribution of a substituent to the lipophilicity of a compound.

Research Interests: Organic Chemistry; Interaction of organic chemicals with living organisms, Quantitative Structure Activity Relationships (QSAR).


He died of pneumonia on May 8, 2011 in Claremont, California at 92.[2]

See also[edit]


  • Book: Exploring QSAR - Corwin Hansch, Albert Leo and David Hoekman
  • Reviews: 23 Reviews[3]
  • Journal articles: Co-authored more than 265 articles

His research group at Pomona College worked on QSAR studies and in building and expanding the database of chemical and physical data as C-QSAR and Bioloom. His postgraduate associates were Rajni Garg, Cynthia D Selassie, Suresh Babu Mekapati, and Alka Kurup.


External links[edit]