40th anniversary of the 1st International Cyclodextrin Symposium (Sep 30-Oct 2, 1981)

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The first International Cyclodextrin Symposium was organized by Prof. József Szejtli in Budapest in a hotel of round shape (Hotel Budapest) resembling a bit to the round-shaped cyclodextrins (see the featured image). About his reasons read a few lines of his opening speech:

“First of all I owe you a short explanation how we arrived to the decision to organize this Symposium. It is known for all of you that cyclodextrins have been already known for a long time. Great scientists, as Freundenberg, French, Cramer and many others have dedicated years and years to the investigations of this amazing group of oligosaccharides, creating the fundamentals of molecular encapsulation. We are standing on their shoulders; their publications form the basis of our knowledge, our efforts and our successes….

By the end the sixties such an anormous amount of knowledge has accumulated that the industrial realization of CD production, the application of CDs on industrial scale seemed to be within reach… At that time an intensive research on CDs was launched forth in Japan and independently also in Hungary….”

This symposium with around 200 participants from 19 countries was a great success, a good start of a series. Now we are looking forward to the 20th symposium in 2022 in Giardini Naxos, Sicily.

Some of the participants were already at that time or became later famous in cyclodextrin research. A few names for illustration (not aiming to hurt anyone’s feeling who is not mentioned here): Cramer, Nagai, Horikoshi, Kobayashi, Bender, Saenger, Connors, Frömming, Uekama, Pitha, etc.

Prof. Frömming, Cramer and Szejtli at the symposium in 1981

The number of presentations (25 oral and 45 posters) was not as big as at symposia of the recent years, but the topics covered the whole range of research and application and it gave the opportunity to start collaborations.

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