Josef Fried

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Dr. Joseph Fried (July 21, 1914 – August 17, 2001) was a Polish-American organic chemist, member of the National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.[1] He held 200 patents on chemical compounds, with 43 listing him as the sole holder.[1] He was a professor of chemistry and biochemistry at the University of Chicago.[2] Fried discovered fluorohydrocortisone, a chemical used to treat adrenal disorders.[2] He was also director of the organic chemistry at the Squibb Institute.[1] His discoveries were instrumental to the creation of medications to treat inflammatory disorders including as arthritis, psoriasis, and various skin allergies.[1] National Academies Press called him "an outstanding organic chemist who made very special contributions to the field of medicine".[3] Professor Elias James Corey (Nobel laureate, 1990) had this to say of Fried: "He was an outstanding, highly creative scientist who straddled both the worlds of pharmaceutical research and academic science. He was one of my heroes, and I've always thought of him as a model scientist of great character and great human warmth."[3]

Awards and Distinctions[edit]

Fried became a member of the National Academy of Sciences in 1971.[3] He became a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1981.[3] He received the Medicinal Chemistry Award in 1974 from the American Chemical Society.[3] He also received the Alfred Burger Award in Medicinal Chemistry in 1996.[3] He also received the Gregory Pincus Medal from the Worcester Foundation for Experimental Biology and the Roussel Prize from the Roussel Scientific Institute in Paris in 1994.[3] Bristol-Myers Squibb and the University of Chicago launched in 1990 the first of a series of annual Josef Fried Symposia of Bioorganic Chemistry.[3] Fried is a member of the Medicinal Chemistry Hall of Fame.[4]


Josef Fried was born in the town of Przemyśl, Poland, on July 21, 1914.[3] Fried received his Ph.D. in organic chemistry from Columbia University in 1940.[1] Fried joined the Squibb Institute in 1944 as a head of its antibiotics and steroids department. He was later promoted to director of the organic chemistry section in 1959.[1] In 1963 Fried was appointed professor at the Ben May Laboratory for Cancer Research at the University of Chicago.[2]


  1. ^ a b c d e f The New York Times: Josef Fried, 87, Organic Chemist Noted for Tailored Compounds
  2. ^ a b c The New York Times:Fried in Chicago Cancer Post
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i National Academies Press:JOSEF FRIED BY NELSON J.LEONARD AND ELKAN BLOUT
  4. ^ "Medicinal Chemistry Hall of Fame". Medicinal Chemistry Division, American Chemical Society. Retrieved 28 August 2012.