Calvin, Melvin, 1911–97, American organic chemist and educator, b. St. Paul, Minn., grad. Michigan College of Mining and Technology, 1931, Ph.D. Univ. of Minnesota, 1935. In 1937 he joined the faculty at the Univ. of California, where he became director (1946) of the bioorganic division of the Lawrence Radiation Laboratory (which became the Laboratory of Chemical Biodynamics in 1960) and professor (1947) of chemistry. For his work in determining the chemical reactions that occur when a plant assimilates carbon dioxide, Calvin was awarded the 1961 Nobel Prize in Chemistry. His writings include The Photosynthesis of Carbon Compounds (with J. A. Bassham, 1962) and Chemical Evolution (1969).
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