Rita Levi-Montalcini: 100 Years Old and Still Going Strong
    By Tommaso Dorigo | April 22nd 2009 04:43 AM | 2 comments | Print | E-mail | Track Comments
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    Rita Levi-Montalcini, Nobel Prize for Medicine in 1986, turns 100 years old today: she was born on April 22nd, 1909 -before World War I had begun!

    "Ok," you might say, "she's probably bedridden and demented by now."  Not in the least. She is in full possession of all her wits, is a very active Senator, and has declared a few days ago that her brain works better now than it did when she was 20, because of her experience. I bet she is not kidding.

    As a researcher, her most important contribution to Medicine is the discovery, in 1952, of the Nerve Growth Factor (NGF), a protein inducing differentiation in neurons. She was awarded a Nobel Prize for Medicine in 1986 for that discovery, together with her colleague Stanley Cohen.

    Levi-Montalcini was nominated Senator For Life by italian President Carlo Azeglio Ciampi in 2001. She has been actively following the works of the italian Senate since then, providing in a few cases decisive support to Romano Prodi's 2006-2008 center-left government, which had then a very narrow majority in the Senate.

    My best wishes to Rita, an example of dedication and coherence to all researchers in the World.


    Since she has already achieved Cent Anni,
    what is the proper comparable thing to say to encourage many more years?

    Tony Smith

    :) Tony, I would not wish her 100 more in fact. Let's just say that I wish "salute" to her - saying "lunga vita" would be meaningless, given the premises.