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Rolf Huisgen

Rolf Huisgen
Rolf Huisgen.JPG
Rolf Huisgen (2004)
Born (1920-06-13) 13 June 1920 (age 99)
Alma materUniversity of Munich
Known for1,3-Dipolar cycloaddition
Awards1961 Liebig Medal
1979 Otto Hahn Prize for Chemistry and Physics
Scientific career
InstitutionsUniversity of Munich
Doctoral advisorHeinrich Otto Wieland

Rolf Huisgen (born 13 June 1920) is a German chemist. His importance in synthetic organic chemistry extends to the enormous influence he had in post-war chemistry departments in Germany and Austria, due to the large number of his "habilitants" becoming professors. His major achievements was the development of the 1,3-Dipolar cycloaddition reaction.

Early life

He was born in Gerolstein in the Rhineland-Palatinate and studied in Munich under the supervision of Heinrich Otto Wieland.


After completing his Ph.D. in 1943 and his habilitation in 1947, he was named professor at the University of Tübingen in 1949. He returned to the University of Munich in 1952 where he remained dedicated to research long after attaining emeritus status in 1988.[1]

One of his major achievements was the development of the 1,3-Dipolar cycloaddition reaction, also known as the Huisgen cycloaddition or Huisgen reaction.[2][3] The Huisgen reaction is of paramount importance to the synthesis of heterocyclic compounds.

Some notable students of his include Ivar Karl Ugi, Johann Mulzer, Bernd Giese, Johann Gasteiger, Herbert Mayr (Chemist), Hans-Ulrich Reissig, Jürgen Sauer and Reinhard Brückner.

Personal life

His daughter, mathematician Birge Huisgen-Zimmermann was born in 1946.


  1. ^ Jeffrey I. Seeman (2005). "Rolf Huisgen: A Gentleman Scholar with Energy and Passion". Helvetica Chimica Acta. 88 (6): 1145–1153. doi:10.1002/hlca.200590097.
  2. ^ Huisgen, Rolf (November 1963). "Kinetics and Mechanism of 1,3-Dipolar Cycloadditions". Angewandte Chemie International Edition. 2 (11): 633–645. doi:10.1002/anie.196306331. Archived from the original on 2012-12-11.
  3. ^ Huisgen, Rolf (October 1963). "1,3-Dipolar Cycloadditions. Past and Future". Angewandte Chemie International Edition. 2 (10): 565–598. doi:10.1002/anie.196305651.[dead link]


  • Rüchardt, Christoph; Sauer, Jürgen; Sustmann, Reiner (2005). "Rolf Huisgen: Some Highlights of His Contributions to Organic Chemistry". Helvetica Chimica Acta. 88 (6): 1154. doi:10.1002/hlca.200590098.
  • Houk, Kendall N. (2010). "Rolf Huisgen's Profound Adventures in Chemistry". Helvetica Chimica Acta. 93 (7): 1241. doi:10.1002/hlca.201000209.