The Discovery Of Caffeine


Friedlieb Ferdinand Runge

What's one of the best things about coffee, besides it's comforting aroma or bold taste? The caffeine of course! Millions of people thank coffee every morning, for helping them get their move on.  But who should we really thank for this eye opening experience? Friedlieb Ferdinand Runge!

Runge is a German analytical chemist born February 8, 1794. Today would be his 225th birthday!

After Runge demonstrated his belladonna discovery to Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe, he began to analyze the chemical makeup of coffee beans. Discovering caffeine as its active ingredient. And to this proud finding, we salute you! 

However, he is not only credited for his discovery of caffeine but also  working on the first coal tar dye (aniline blue) and the first extraction of quinoline, which led to the derivative quinine, a drug used to treat malaria.

Today, Google celebrates Runge on their home page with a neat little animation. Let us raise our mugs to Runge and celebrate his birthday and accomplishments together!




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