A brief historical account is given, covering the influence of Professor Herman mark on cellulose research at The University of Texas at Austin. A statement made by Professor Mark in late 1986 during a visit to Professor Brown's laboratory provided the central theme of this personal memoir. Upon reviewing the recently achieved in vitro synthesis of cellulose II, Professor Mark commented that it should be reasonable for someone to synthesize crystalline cellulose I synthetically. At the time, this seemed farfetched; however, cellulose I was, indeed, assembled abiogenically in 1992 from partially purified enzyme mixtures of Trichoderma cellulase using acetonitrile/aqueous buffer and cellobiosyl fluoride as the substrate. The dream of one day synthesizing the metastable crystalline allomorph of cellulose as found in nature, was realized, due in no small measure to the insight and inspiration of Herman Mark.
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