Renowned Marine Biologist Dr. Hugo Freudenthal ’48 Is Honored

It’s not every day that one has a genus named in one’s honor.

Dr. Hugo Freudenthal ’48 at Reunion 2018

Poly Prep alumnus and renowned marine biologist Dr. Hugo Freudenthal ’48 recently received great news from New Zealand that Freudenthalidium, a new genus in the Symbiodiniaceae family, was named in his honor. Dr. Matt Nitschke PhD, MMarCon, BSc wrote to him from the Victoria University of Wellington, “We have named the type species Freudenthalidium heronense, in reference to Heron Island where we first discovered these new strains. Perhaps you can even picture the exact location we sampled—on the South beach, near to shore, in line with the large Casuarina trees. The second species we named Freudenthalidium endolithicum, from the Greek endon, within, inside, and the Greek lithos, stone, in reference to reef sands from where these strains were isolated.” In Dr. Nitschke’s Twitter feed, he credits Dr. Freudenthal’s 1962 “formative paper where the genus was first introduced.”

“There are coral reef researchers into the hundreds now working in this area and they all know your name. So with that, I would just like to say thank you! You set the foundations for a new generation of researchers.”

Dr. Matthew Nitschke

Dr. Freudenthal Attended the Class of 1948’s 70th Poly Prep Class Reunion in 2018

At the 2018 Poly Reunion, Alexandra Nava-Baltimore ’20 met Dr. Freudenthal as he waited to have his class photo taken to celebrate the Class of 1948’s 70th reunion. He made quite an impression and their delightful conversation was captured in Alexandra’s Poly Instagram student takeover from the event. When she was told of this honor bestowed on Dr. Freudenthal, Alexandra was excited to share her congratulations. We concur. Congratulations!

“Dr. Hugo Freudenthal eagerly shared his recollection of his education at Poly and fascinating career with me. Our interview at the 2018 Special Reunion was filled with pride, as his family stood by him with joy and excitement as we spoke. We formed a bond over our mutual love of photography and the Poly Prep yearbook. I am so honored to have been able to interview and speak with such a genuine man, Dr. Freudenthal, congratulations to you!”

Alexandra Nava-Baltimore ’20
Hugo Freudenthal in Poly Prep’s 1948 yearbook