December 8: A Google Doodle in honor of Jan Ingenhousz, credited as the father of photosynthesis. (Photo: Google)

The scientist credited as the father of photosynthesis was born on this day 287 years ago.

On Friday, Google paid tribute to Jan Ingenhousz, a Dutch scientist born in 1730 who discovered the photosynthetic process, used by plants to convert sunlight into food.

The logo presents the "l" as a plant with the second "o" as the sun, which details how plants use water and sunlight to thrive.

According to Google, Ingenhousz began studying medicine at the age of 16, traveling to London to immunize hundreds of people at risk of smallpox. He then served as a family doctor in the Austrian Empress Maria Theresa.

"Although it was already known that plants produced and absorbed gases, it was Ingenhousz who first noticed that oxygen was produced by the leaves in sunlight and the carbon dioxide produced in the dark." Google wrote in a blog post published on Friday.

Ingenhousz published his findings in 1779.

Follow Brett Molina on Twitter: @ brettmolina23 .


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