Napoleon D. TOPALĂ (1928-1988) – founder of the Microbiology School of Iaşi

Born in Northern Moldavia, he attended primary and secondary school in his home town and high school at Grigore Ghica High School in Dorohoi. He perfected his training as a naturalist in Iasi, finishing his bachelor studies (Faculty of Natural Sciences, Alexandru Ioan Cuza University of Iaşi) in 1950 as valedictorian. Moulded by the famous contemporary biology professors of  Iasi (Petre Jitariu, Petru Şuster, Constantin Papp, Oreste Marcu, Mariana Papafil) the young graduate began his academic career that he served  faithfully immediately after graduation, being faithful to it for almost four decades. In 1960 he defended his doctoral thesis in Animal Physiology under the supervision of academician Petre Jitariu. Having solid training in general Biology, Napoleon Topală became professor of General Microbiology in 1961. He brought constant contributions to this borderline field of Biology, being rightfully considered today the founder of the Microbiology school of Iaşi.

In recognition of the quality of his academic activity, professor Napoleon D. Topală was granted in 1985 the “Excellent University Professor” title. In 1979 the Romanian Academy awarded him the Emanoil Teodorescu Prize for his remarkable achievements in the science of the living matter.

A landmark in the professor’s activity was the foundation under his guidance (after 1970) of the Industrial Microbiology Laboratory of the Biological Research Center Iasi.

Moreover, beginning with 1976, professor Napoleon D. Topală organized the Symposium of Industrial Microbiology and Biotechnology twice a year, four of the editions taking place in Iaşi (1976-1987) and he personally supervised the  printing of the cumulative scientific paper volumes of the symposiums.