Hilde Mangold

Hilde Mangold was born in Thuringia, a province in central-eastern Germany in 1898. She attended the University of Jena in Germany for two semesters, then transferred to the University of Frankfurt in Germany. It was here that she saw a lecture by the renowned embryologist Hans Spemann on experimental embryology. After Frankfurt, she attended the Zoological Institute inFreiburg. Here, she completed her 1923 dissertation. Her dissertation was the foundation for her mentor Hans Spemann’s 1935 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for the discovery of the embryonic organizer. She demonstrated embryonic induction, which is the capacity of certain cells to direct the developmental trajectory of other cells. Mangold performed very delicate transplantation experiments with embryos. This was very impressive, especially before the discovery of antibiotics to prevent infection after surgery. After earning her PhD in zoology, Hilde, along with her husband and infant son moved to Berlin. Soon after the move, she died of severe burns from a gas explosion in her home. Unfortunately, she did not live to see the publication of her thesis results.