RITA LEVI MONTALCINI
Rita Levi Montalcini received the Nobel Prize in Medicine for the discovery of Nerve Growth Factor in 1986, together with Stanley Cohen. She received her M.D. from the Institute of Human Anatomy of the University of Turin. Her entire career was dedicated to the study of the nervous system, first in Turin and later at Washington University in St Louis and the University of Rio de Janeiro. In 1969 she settled permanently in Italy to assume the direction of the Institute of Cell Biology at the CNR in Rome. Rita Levi-Montalcini is a member of the most prestigious scientific academies, such as l´Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei, l´Accademia Pontificia, l´Accademia delle Scienze, the National Academy of Sciences of the USA and the Royal Society. In 2001 she was appointed Senator for life of the Italian Republic.
LESZEK KRZYSTOF BORYSIEWICZ
Professor Sir Leszek Borysiewicz is a clinical scientist specialising in infectious diseases. He was knighted in the 2001 New Year’s Honours List for his contribution to medical education and his research which led to the development of a vaccine for human papillomavirus, a cause of cervical cancer. From 2007 to 2010 he was Chief Executive of the UK’s Medical Research Council, and before that Deputy Rector of Imperial College London. As Deputy Rector of Imperial College, Sir Leszek was responsible for the overall academic and scientific direction of the institution, particularly the development of inter-disciplinary research between engineering, physical sciences and biomedicine. He became the 345th Vice-Chancellor of the University of Cambridge on 1 October 2010.
CARLO M. CROCE
Carlo M. Croce, since 2004 has been Professor of Internal Medicine and Chair of Molecular Virology, Immunology & Medical Genetics of The Ohio State University. From 1991 to 2004 he was Professor and Chairman of the Department of Microbiology/Immunology of Thomas Jefferson University. His research is focused on early molecular changes in genes that lead to cancer and how those changes might serve as targets for new treatments and preventive agents, resulting in the identification of several mutated genes involved in leukemias, lymphomas and other cancers. Dr. Croce is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the recipient of numerous awards and honors. He is the author or co-author of more than 560 articles and 750 Scientific publications.
Dr. Draetta is Director of the Institute for Applied Cancer Science of the University of Texas MD AndersonCancer Center in Houston. He was previously Dana Farber Presidential Scholar, Chief Research Business Development Officer and Deputy Director of the Belfer Institute for Applied Cancer Science in Boston. Prior to that Dr. Draetta held appointments at Pharmacia and Merck, as vice-president and worldwide head of oncology drug discovery, and served as an investigator at the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, the European Molecular Biology Laboratory in Heidelberg, Germany and at the European Institute of Oncology. Dr. Draetta received his medical and post-graduate degrees from the University of Naples Medical School, Italy.
Jeffrey S. Flier was named dean of the Faculty of Medicine at Harvard University in 2007. An authority on the molecular causes of obesity and diabetes, Dean Flier is also the Carolyn Shields Walker professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School. Previously he served as the HMS faculty dean for academic programs and chief academic officer for Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. Following his residency training in internal medicine at Mount Sinai Hospital, he joined the National Institutes of Health. In 1978, he joined the Faculty of medicine at HMS and was named chief of the Diabetes Unit at Beth Israel Hospital until 1990, when he became chief of the Endocrine Division. He has authored more than 200 scholarly papers and reviews. He is a fellow of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences.
Peter S. Kim is president of Merck Research Laboratories (MRL). Kim was promoted to this position in January 2003. In this role he oversees all of Merck’s drug and vaccine research and development activities. Kim, a Korean-American, joined the Company in 2001 as executive vice president, Research and Development for MRL. Kim trained as a structural biologist. He has studied at Stanford University, where he earned his doctorate in biochemistry, and Cornell University, graduating with distinction in chemistry. While at Stanford, he was also a Medical Scientist Training Program Fellow. Later, Kim worked as a Professor of Biology at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and was a Member of the Whitehead Institute and an Investigator at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. Kim has a special interest in HIV / AIDS research and designed compounds that stop membrane fusion by the AIDS virus, thereby preventing it from infecting cells. Kim also served as a member of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Advisory Committee to develop an AIDS vaccine. His research and work in improving human health has earned Kim numerous awards and other recognition. Some of these honors are noted in the following sections.
Dr. Lamberto Maffei is an outstanding neurobiologist. He is a professor of Neurobiology at the Scuola Normale Superiore (Italy’s leading research institution), University of Pisa, Italy. Since 1980, he has been Director of the Institute of Neuroscience of the Italian National Research Council (CNR) in Pisa. Dr. Maffei is a member of three Academies: the European Academy of Science, the American Academy of Arts and Science and the Italian National Academy of Sciences, where he has been vice-president since 2003. In addition, he is also a member of the Italian Ministry of University and Research’s Committee for Neurosciences and of the European Institute for Paraplegia. With 271 scientific publications to his credit, Dr. Maffei has received several prestigious awards, such as the Award of the Italian Society for Electroencephalography and Clinical Neurophysiology in 1965, Golgi Award for Neurophysiology in 1975, Giuseppe Giannuzzi Award for Research on the Nervous System in 1976, Feltrinelli Award for Medicine in 1979 and the Golgi Medal for Neuroscience in 1995.
Sergio Pecorelli, MD is the President of AIFA, the Italian Regulatory Agency for Medicines. A former fellow in Surgery at the Mayo School of Medicine, Rochester, MN, he is also Professor and Chairman of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology and Director of the Division of Gynecologic Oncology at the University of Brescia and since 2010, President of the University Research Council and Dean of the School of Obstetrics at the University of Brescia. From 1970 to 2009, Prof. Pecorelli performed and participated in more than 6,600 major surgical procedures, of which 3,739 were oncological cases. He is author of 306 papers , 21 book chapters and 4 books.
Rino Rappuoli is Global Head of Vaccines Research at Novartis Vaccines and Diagnostics and is based in Siena, Italy. Prior to that he was head R&D of Sclavo and then Head of Vaccine Research and Chief Scientific Officer of Chiron Corporation. Several molecules he worked with became part, or are near to becoming, licensed vaccines. He was elected member of the US National Academy of Sciences and the European Molecular Biology Organization. He has introduced several novel scientific concepts (genetic detoxification, 1987, cellular microbiology, 1996; reverse vaccinology, 2000; pangenome, 2005).