Fritz Albert Lipmann was born on June 12, 1899, in Koenigsberg, Germany (now Kaliningrad, Russia). From 1917 to 1922, he studied medicine at the universities Koenigsberg, Berlin, and Munich. In 1924, Lipmann obtained his medical degree at Berlin University. In 1926, he became an assistant at the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute under the guidance of Otto Meyerhof. In 1927, Lipmann returned to the University of Berlin to aquire his Ph.D. He returned to the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute in 1930, but left to spend a year as a Rockefeller Fellow researching in the University’s laboratory. In 1932, he moved to Copenhagen, where he was appointed Research Associate in the Biological Institute of the Carlsberg Foundation.
In 1939, Lipmann immigrated to the United States, fleeing the Nazi regime. That year, he became Research Associate in the Department of Biochemistry at Cornell Medical School in New York. At Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston (1941-1957), where he headed the biochemistry research department, Lipmann isolated (1947) and determined the active molecular structure (1953) as Coenzymen A. Coenzymen A is one of the most important catalyst involved in cellular metabolism and the breakdown of food into functional energy.
From 1949 to 1957, he was appointed Professor of Biological Chemistry at Harvard Medical School. Afterward, he taught and researched at Rockefeller University in New York City.
He was awarded the Nobel Prize for Medicine in 1953 (along with Hans Krebs) for his dicovery of coenzyme A. In addition to receiving the Nobel Prize, Lipmann was awarded the National Medal of Science in 1966. He is also a member of several distinguished societies including a Foreign Member of the Royal Society in London, the Faraday Society, and the Danish Royal Academy of Sciences.
Lipmann died on July 24, 1986, in Poughkeepsie, New York.