Pub. date: 2008 | Online Pub. Date: November 27, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412953948 | Print ISBN: 9781412928168 | Online ISBN: 9781412953948| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Goldberger, Joseph (1874–1929)
Alan M. Kraut
Joseph Goldberger was the medical detective and pathbreaking epidemiologist in the U.S. Marine Hospital Service (later the U.S. Public Health Service [PHS]) responsible for discovering that pellagra was a nutritional disease. Goldberger's research and controversial experimentation revealed that pellagra could be cured and prevented by eating a balanced diet rich in animal protein or augmenting the diet with brewer's yeast. Later research following Goldberger's death revealed that insufficient nicotinic acid or niacin in the diet caused pellagra. Born in Giralt, Hungary, on July 16, 1874, Goldberger emigrated to the United States with his parents and three older siblings in 1883 after a plague wiped out the herd of sheep on which the family depended for its living. Among the millions of Jewish immigrants to arrive in the United States in this era, Joseph's parents, Samuel and Sarah Goldberger, opened a small grocery store on New York's Lower East Side. Joseph ...