Joseph Frederick Hoffman, PhD

Joseph Frederick Hoffman, PhD, Eugene Higgins Professor Emeritus of Mobile and Molecular Physiology, handed away

Joseph Frederick Hoffman, PhD, Eugene Higgins Professor Emeritus of Mobile and Molecular Physiology, handed away on Could 19, 2022 at age 97. He was a tireless and devoted researcher of crimson blood cells who revealed papers till he was 93.

Hoffman was born on March 7, 1925, in Oklahoma Metropolis, Oklahoma, the place, like his two older brothers, he achieved the rank of Eagle Scout. He graduated from the College of Oklahoma in 1948 after incomes each bachelor’s and grasp’s levels. He was then admitted to the graduate college of Princeton College the place he obtained a second grasp’s diploma (1951) and a doctoral diploma in physiology (1952). After finishing his research, he joined the school of Princeton’s Division of Biology and carried out research on the Brookhaven Nationwide Laboratory.

He left Princeton in 1956 to pursue analysis work on the College of Cambridge and, in 1957, he was employed by Robert Berliner (future dean of Yale College of Drugs) who then was serving because the director of the Laboratory of Kidney and Electrolyte Metabolism on the Nationwide Institutes of Well being. Hoffman got here to Yale in 1965 to affix the school of the Division of Physiology, serving because the division’s chair from 1967–1968 and from 1973–1979.

Whereas at Princeton, Hoffman started his research of the membrane permeability properties of crimson blood cells, which grew to become his central focus by means of greater than six many years of analysis. He was intrigued by the roles of ATP-driven ion pumps and ion channels in defining the ionic composition of a cell’s cytoplasm and in regulating cell quantity. In the course of the time he spent at Brookhaven, Hoffman met and shaped a lifelong friendship with Daniel Tosteson (who later served because the dean of Harvard Medical College). Hoffman and Tosteson grew to become shut scientific collaborators and, in 1960, revealed a landmark paper within the Journal of Basic Physiology that described their “pump-leak” mannequin. This mathematical formulation supplied a theoretical framework that defined in predictive element how the fluxes by means of ion pumps, channels, and transporters account for the distributions of ions throughout a cell’s plasma membrane and for the upkeep of steady cell quantity despite osmotic forces that is likely to be anticipated to provide cell swelling and lysis.

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Throughout his time at Yale, Hoffman continued to discover mechanisms of membrane transport and their position in figuring out cell form. Hoffman and colleagues created extremely versatile light-activated chemical probes that might be used to label ion transport proteins and to review the kinetic properties of ion transport processes. Though he formally closed his laboratory and have become an emeritus professor in 2003, he remained passionately concerned within the biology of crimson blood cells. His closing two analysis papers, which explored the mechanisms by means of which crimson blood cells preserve their intriguing biconcave disc form, had been revealed within the Proceedings of the Nationwide Academy of Sciences in 2016 and 2018, when he was 91 and 93 years previous. For his many accomplishments as a scientist and as a pacesetter, Hoffman obtained quite a few honors, together with election to the Nationwide Academy of Sciences in 1981 and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1984. He served because the president of the Biophysical Society and of the Society of Basic Physiologists, and he edited quite a few books and journals. Hoffman was a really lively participant within the mental life and communal spirit of the Division of Mobile and Molecular Physiology till he fell sick in early April of this yr.

Hoffman’s survivors embrace his nephew, Richard E. Hoffman, MD (Molly), of Denver, CO; his nieces, Patricia Ann McNichols of Milwaukee, WI, Jill E. Tiernan (Thomas) of Dallas, TX, and Claudia Citkovitz (John Barnard) of Shutesbury, MA; his sister-in-law, Evgenia Citkowitz; and 6 great-nieces, in addition to cousins ​​and in-laws. He was pre-deceased by Elena Citkowitz, MD (Yale ’83), his spouse of 41 years, and his two brothers, Edmund Hoffman and Henry Hoffman Jr.

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