Christian RenÃ©, viscount de Duve was a Nobel Prize-winning Belgian cytologist and biochemist. He was born in Thames Ditton, Surrey, Great Britain, as a son of Belgian refugees during the First World War. They returned to Belgium in 1920. He was the Founding President of the prestigious L'OrÃ©al-UNESCO Awards for Women in Science. He made serendipitous discoveries of two eukaryotic organelles, peroxisome and lysosome, for which he shared the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine in 1974 with Albert Claude and George E. Palade. He was a multilingual, able to speak English, French, German, and Flemish, and the skill which once saved his life.
He died at his chosen time on 4 May 2013 by self-induced euthanasia in the presence of all of his children.