The Italian chemist Michele Peyrone (1813‐1883) was the first to synthesise cisplatin (cis-diamminedichloro-platinum (II)), the basis of today’s most widely used family of anticancer drugs. This biographical article aims to present, for the first time in the
English lan-guage,a summary of his life and the achievements that he made during his scientific career.Originally trained in medicine, Peyrone moved to chemistry and attended some of the most prestigious institutions in Europe in his time. He wrote several publications describing his work
on ‘Peyrone’s chloride’ (PtCl
3 )2) and Magnus’ green salt ([Pt(NH
]). He later turned his attention to agricultural science where he defended important
advances in the understanding of plant growth. Michele Peyrone’s dedication to science is best summarised in the English translation of his first report on the synthesis of cisplatin: “I am determined to pursue this subject with all my energies,with-out having regard for the difficulties
to be encountered at every step in so expensive and delicate a research”.
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