Tamás Keleti (Budapest, May 13, 1927 - Budapest, October 4, 1989) is a biochemist, candidate (1958) and doctor of biological sciences (1965), correspondent of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences (1976), then full member (1987). He was a key biochemist in the second half of the 20th century, a school-creating individual in enzyme kinetics research in Hungary, ie the study of enzyme-catalyzed chemical reactions.
Son of Zoltán Keleti (Klein) (1895–1970), chemical engineer, factory manager and Margit Langfelder (1899–1949). He obtained his degree in chemistry at the Pázmány Péter University in Budapest in 1948, and during his studies he also listened to the biochemistry lectures of Albert Szent-Györgyi, who was teaching in the capital at the time. In 1948–1949 he was a demonstrator at the Institute of Pathology of the University of Debrecen, in 1949–1950 he was an intern. In 1950 he obtained a doctorate in chemistry from the University of Debrecen, after which he was appointed head of the biochemistry laboratory of the Institute of Pathology. Soon, however, back in 1950, he was appointed a research assistant at the Institute of Biochemistry of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences in Szeged, where he continued his research work as an aspirant from 1953, as a research associate from 1956, and as a senior researcher from 1963. In the meantime, from 1961 to 1962, he taught as a visiting professor at the University of Hanoi. In 1972, he became the Deputy Director of the Institute of Enzymology of the Biochemical Research Institute, renamed the Szeged Biological Center after 1978, and from 1985 until his death he was the director of the research activities of the institute.
With his studies on the relationships between enzyme structure and enzyme function, he was a school-creating individual of enzyme kinetics in Hungary. His research has focused on the mechanism of action of enzymes, the supramolecular organization and thermodynamic interactions of enzymes, the temporal course of biochemical reactions catalyzed by enzymes, and the interactions of metabolic regulation at the macromolecular level. He has participated in the editorial work of several international journals.
Memberships and recognitions
In recognition of his scientific achievements, he was elected a corresponding member of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences in 1976 and a full member in 1987. From 1962 he was the chairman of the Hungarian Biochemical Society, and from 1981 until his death he was the chairman of the Hungarian National Committee of the International Union of Biochemistry.
He was awarded the Academic Prize in 1961, and in 1974 he was inaugurated as an honorary professor at Eötvös Loránd University.
His main works
Enzyme kinetics. Budapest, Hungarian Biochemical Society, 1970, 195 p.
Basics of enzyme kinetics. Budapest, Tankönyvkiadó, 1971, 154 p.Second, revised edition: Basics of enzyme kinetics. Budapest, Tankönyvkiadó, 1976, 241 p.
Mathematical models of metabolic regulation. Ed. By Tamás Keleti & Zsuzsa Lakatos. Budapest, Akadémiai, 1976, 259 p.
Thermodynamic approach to enzyme action regulation and evolution. in: New trends in the description of the general mechanism and regulation of enzymes: Symposium on enzyme action. Budapest, Akadémiai, 1978, 107–130.
Enzyme kinetics. Budapest, Tankönyvkiadó, 1985, 374 p.
Basic enzyme kinetics. Budapest, Akadémiai, 1986, 420 p.
Hungarian Biographical Lexicon IV: 1978–1991 (AZ). Editor-in-Chief. Ágnes Kenyeres. Budapest: Akadémiai. 1994. ISBN 963-05-6422-X
Hungarian Grand Lexicon X. (Ir – Kip). Editor-in-Chief. Mrs. László Bárány. Budapest: Hungarian Grand Lexicon. 2000. 719. p. ISBN 963-9257-02-8
New Hungarian biographical lexicon III. (H – K). Editor-in-Chief. László Markó. Budapest: Hungarian Book Club. 2002. p. 839. ISBN 963-547-414-8