Stories by subject area: Biology

The dutch physician Christiaan Eijkman is trying to cure people from a strange illness. Beri-Beri was known in the dutch colonies for a long time, but researchers were unable to identify the cause for the disease. The history of finally understanding cause and effect of Beri-Beri is far from being straightforward.
Eijkman and Beri-Beri

"There's lots to be done, but they had an idea how to show, that the human body burns food." The fascinating path, which may have led to this discovery, is depicted in
Lavoisier and respiration

When Emma Muspratt, daughter of one of Liebig's friends, became so ill she could not eat anymore, Justus von Liebig made the attempt to produce a meat extract which she could drink instead of eating the meat. The result is a precursor to modern bouillon cubes.
Liebig and nutrition

„The notorious scurvy“ is maybe the best-known illness from which seamen of all times suffered. James Lind, a ship's doctor, was able to find the cause of the scurvy by employing a highly systematic approach: a comparative, experimentally-based study on his patients. More details can be found in the narration
Lind and scurvy

The Bavarian War Secretary Benjamin Thompson has to solve the problem how to feed his army as economically as possible. But potatoes, which could provide the solution to this challenge, had a bad reputation at that time.
Rumford and nutrition

Maria Sibylla Merian started to observe caterpillar cocoons and make drawings of those at the age of 13. Nineteen years later, she published her first book in which she layed out the principle of metamorphosis and illustrated it with a lot of her drawings. You'll find ideas on how Sibylla's idea make drawings of caterpillars and butterflies may have emerged in
Sibylla and the cocoons