Jagannath Ganguly earned his DSc degree (1963) from the University of Reading, UK. His specialization was in biochemistry of Vitamin-A and biochemistry of lipids. He was Professor and Chairman of the Department of Biochemistry, and Head of UGC Centre for Advanced Study in Biochemistry, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore. Ganguly was also an INSA Senior Scientist.
Academic and Research Achievements: Ganguly isolated a new pro-Vitamin-A carotenoid, exchinenone, and established its structure. He demonstrated that carotene is cleaved giving retinal and a series of apocarotenals, which are eventually converted to retinoic acid. This mechanism has been accepted to be the major source of retinoic acid in the animal body. He also demonstrated that Vitamin-A is required for proliferation and differentiation of cells. He was the first to show the presence of retinal-binding protein in blood and also demonstrated the malonate pathway for fatty acid synthesis. He wrote a book entitled, Biochemistry of Vitamin-A (CRC Press, 1979).
Other Contributions: Ganguly edited a book, entitled Current Trends in the Biochemistry of Lipids (Academic Press, 1972). He was a member of the Society of Biological Chemists (India), Indian Dairy Science Association and INSA Council (1977-79). He was a member of the Guha Research Conference.
Awards and Honours: Ganguly was the recipient of SS Bhatnagar Prize (1963), BC Guha Memorial Lecture of INSA (1975) and FICCI Award (1978). He also received Rafi Ahmed Kidwai Memorial Prize of ICAR (1978-79) and JG Kane Lecture of Oil Technologists Association of India (1982).