Biography of Alfred Kast
Alfred Kast studied medicine in Heidelberg, Freiburg, and Leipzig, graduating M.D. in Freiburg 1879. He was assistant physician under Wilhelm Heinrich Erb (1840-1921) in Heidelberg, and then worked with Julius Friedrich Cohnheim (1839-1884) in pathology in Leipzig. In 1881 he entered a position as clinical assistant to Christian Bäumler (1836-1933) in Freiburg im Breisgau, where he also worked at the physiological-chemical institute under Eugen Baumann (1846-1896).
Kast was habilitated in Freiburg in 1883 and became extraordinary professor in 1886. In 1888 he became director of the new Eppendorf Hospital in Hamburg, and in 1892 was appointed professor of internal medicine in Breslau (Wroclaw). Kast received the title of Geheimer Medicinal-Rath-Rat (privy medical counsellor).
Kast introduced phenacetin and the sulphonal group of drugs (1888), which were widely used as hypnotics before they were replaced by barbiturates. Together with Theodor Rumpel (1862-1923) he published a beautifully illustrated atlas of pathology and published widely on neurology and pharmacology.