Text size

Main content starts here.

Umetaro Suzuki Vitamin A, Vitamin B1

(Prepared by Pubulic Relations Section Genneral Affairs Division)

Vitamins are necessary to maintain health. Dr. Umetaro Suzuki, for instance, noticed that a component of rice bran was effective in preventing beriberi, the cause of which was unknown at the time. Dr. Suzuki was the first to discover aberic acid, today called vitamin B1, in rice bran. He later succeeded in isolating vitamin B1.

With his pupil Dr. Katsumi Takahashi, Dr. Suzuki later succeeded in isolating and extracting vitamin A from cod liver oil at The Institute of Physical and Chemical Research. This was later sold under the name "Riken Vitamins," "Riken" being the Japanese abbreviation of the Institute name. Through his development of outstanding researchers at the Institute, Umetaro Suzuki laid the foundation for vitamin research in Japan.

Aberic acid=Orzyzanin vitamin B1
Aberic acid=Orzyzanin (vitamin B1)
(Photo: Mitsui & Co., Ltd.)
Bottled Riken Vitamins Vitamin A
Bottled Riken Vitamins (Vitamin A)
(Photo: The Institute of Physical and Chemical Research)

Linked from [Ten Japanese Great Inventors]

[Last updated 7 October 2002]