Louis Pasteur, French chemist and inventor of pasteurization, c 1870.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Louis Pasteur (1822-1895) introduced pasteurization to kill pathogens in milk, wine and foods, and produced vaccines against anthrax and rabies. In 1884 he was appointed Profesor of Chemistry at the University of Lille where he researched the reasons why some alcohols turn sour. Pasteur discovered that, by heating liquid to a certain temperature, the bacteria was killed. Pasteurization is now carried out on milk. His succes enabled the Pasteur Institute to be built by public subscription.