Academician Pavel Vlad

(June 6,1936, Lipnic village, Soroca county (today Ocnitsa county) Republic of Moldova – March 24, 2017, Chisinau, Republic of Moldova)

Chemist, scientific area: organic chemistry, bioorganic chemistry,
chemistry of natural and physiologically active compounds

•    Doctor Habilitate in Chemical Sciences (1984) 
•    Professor (1990) 
•    Corresponding member of the Academy of Sciences of Moldova (1989)
•    Full member of the Academy of Sciences of Moldova (1992)

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Academician Pavel Vlad was born on June 6, 1936, in the village of Lipnic (Soroca County) where he graduated high school in 1953. The same year, he took the exams and was enrolled at the Faculty of Chemistry of the State University of Moldova. After graduating the university (1958) he was assigned to the Institute of Chemistry of the Academy of Sciences of Moldova in the Laboratory of Chemistry of Natural Compounds. Under the guidance of academician Gheorghe Lazurievski he continued his doctoral studies (1958-1961) and in 1964 he defended his doctoral thesis in chemistry with the topic "Stereochemistry of some diterpenoids of the labdan group". After two decades of intense research work, he crowns the results in an impressive doctor habilitate dissertation, entitled "Research on Labdanic diterpenoids", presented at the Specialized Scientific Council of the prestigious Institute of Organic Chemistry of the USSR Academy of Sciences. In 1974, the chemist Pavel Vlad was appointed deputy director for scientific activity, and in 1975 - director of the Institute of Chemistry of the ASM. In March 1995, the ASM General Assembly appointed Academician Pavel Vlad as Vice President of the Main Scientific Forum of the Republic of Moldova, the Academy of Sciences of Moldova. He held this position for 9 years. In 2004 he returns to the Institute of Chemistry of the ASM, where he continues his scientific activity as head of the Terpenoid Chemistry Laboratory, which he leads from 1977 to 2010.

Academician Pavel Vlad is the founder of the scientific school of organic chemistry, bioorganics, chemistry of natural and physiologically active compounds. The extensive fundamental research carried out within the scientific school of academician Pavel Vlad was focused on:

  • elaboration of general methods for determining the absolute configuration of a series of important labdane diterpenoids, which allowed the elucidation of the stereochemistry of over 170 different compounds;
  • directed transformation of labdanic diterpenoids into bi-, tri- and tetracyclic compounds;
  • elaboration of synthesis methods of norlbdan and drimanic compounds;
  • synthesis of perhydronaphthofuranic and perhydroindenopyranic derivatives with a strong amber smell that is of interest for perfumery and cosmetics.

Together with his collaborators, Academician Pavel Vlad proposed a new theory for assessing the dependence of structural odor on amber and musk-smelling compounds, which found high appreciation from an impressive number of scientists abroad. This theory allows the synthesis of fine-smelling amber and musk compounds.

The research of academician Pavel Vlad resulted in the discovery of a new method of transforming bicyclic labdanic diterpenoids into tetracyclic compounds, which is performed at the interaction of a series of labdanoids with superacids. By establishing the chemical laws of this reaction for different classes of terpene compounds (alcohols, their acetates, acids, esters, etc.),  the fundamental nature of the reaction was noted (Vlad reaction). 

Academician Pavel Vlad paid great attention to applying his scientific work into practice. Under his guidance, original and efficient methods were developed and implemented in perfumery for the preparation of known compounds - norambreinolide, sclareol, drimenone, ambroxide; as well as new compounds- ketoxide, ambrol, ionoxide. From the local raw material were obtained 14 odorous compositions for tobacco, 9 of which were implemented at the Tobacco Factory in Chisinau for the production of "Zimbru" and "MT" type cigarettes, with an economic effect of about 3 million lei.

The results of the researches of academician Pavel Vlad, obtained over the years, have been materialized into over 400 scientific publications, including 3 monographs: Bicyclic diterpenoids (1976, et al.); Synthesis and application of fragrances from labdan deterpenoids (1988, et al.); Synthesis and study of terpene compounds (2012, et al.); and four textbooks: Organic Chemistry (1997, et al.); Theoretical bases of organic chemistry. Hydrocarbons. Halogenated derivatives (2003); Introductory course of stereochemistry of organic compounds (in colab., 2013 in Russian, 2014 in Romanian). He is the author of 16 synthesis articles, and holds 52 patents.

His inventions were mentioned with diplomas and medals of the EREN of the MSSR (1978, 1984), with 2 bronze (1981) and silver (1984) medals of the EREN of the USSR, with mention diplomas of AGEPI (1996-2001). The cycle of inventions "Odoriferous compounds for perfumery, cosmetics and tobacco industry based on local renewable raw materials - production waste" at the International Invention Shows in Geneva, Switzerland (1999, 2001), Brussels, Belgium ("Eureka", 1995, 1996, 2001) won 4 gold medals and one silver medal. In 2001, Academician Vlad was awarded the WIPO Gold Medal "Outstanding Inventor".

Under the guidance of  academician Pavel Vlad, a demanding mentor, 3 theses of doctor habilitat and 16 PhD theses of chemical sciences were prepared and defended (Dr. habilitate Coltsa Mihail, Dr. habilitate Ungur Nicon, Dr. habilitate Aricu Aculina, Dr. Russo Ada, Dr. Deseatnic-Ciloci Alexandra, Dr. Barba Alic, Dr. Nguen Van Hung, Dr. Zadorojnaia Larisa, Dr. Nguyen Van Tuyen, Dr. Mironov Grigore, Dr. habilitat Kulcitki Veaceslav, Dr. Gorincioi Elena, Dr. Ciocarlan Alexandru, Dr. Grinco Marina, Dr. Edu Carolina).

During the years 2002-2015 he was the President of the Chemical Society of the Republic of Moldova, member of the editorial boards of the journal Chemistry of natural compounds (in Russian) (R. Uzbekistan), The Chemistry Journal (Romania), Chimia, Acta Universitatis "Lucian Blaga" (Romania), Chemistry Journal of Moldova (Moldova).

Highly acclaimed for his professional qualities and scientific results, Academician Vlad is a two-time State Prize winner, winner of the World Intellectual Property Organization Award. He was decorated with the Order of the Republic, the Order of the Badge of Honor, the Medal for Bravery at Work and the Medal of the Academy of Sciences of Moldova Dimitrie Cantemir. In 2011 he was awarded the honorary title "Emeritus of the Republic of Moldova".

Cațer R. Școala acad. Pavel Vlad în domeniul chimiei bioorganice și al chimiei compușilor naturali și fiziologic activi. Buletinul A.Ș.M. Științe Biologice și Chimice, 2001, nr.1.
Membrii Academiei de Științe a Moldovei: Dicționar (1961-2006). Chișinău: Știința, 2006.
Academia de Științe a Moldovei. Academicieni și membri corespondenți. Duca Gh. (coord.), Chișinău, 2015, 192 p.
Academicianul Pavel Vlad savant ilustru și promotor tenace al științei. Colectiv de autori. Institutul de Chimie, Chișinău, 2009, 344 p.
D. Batîr, Neliniștea memoriei. Evoluția chimiei în Moldova și avatarurile vieții. Chișinău, 2007, 348 p.
Duca Gh., Lupascu T. Eulogy to a Man of Excellence: Academician Pavel Vlad. Chemistry Journal of Moldova, 2017, 12(1), p. 119-120. doi:
Duca Gh., Furdui T., Lupașcu T., Arîcu A. La cârma chimiei bioorganice - Academicianul Pavel VLAD la 75 de ani.  Academos. 2011, nr. 2 (21), p. 153-154. 
„Știința în R. Moldova” – Ce semnifică reacția Vlad și la ce folosește aceasta. Curentul. 
Pavel Vlad la 75 de ani: În ambianţă sinergetică cu natura
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