Sitting Down With... Napoleone Ferrara, Distinguished Professor of Pathology and Distinguished Adjunct Professor of Ophthalmology, UC San Diego School of Medicine, California, USA
Napoleone Ferrara |
Take us back to the beginning...
In 1983, after finishing medical school in Catania, I came to the US. At that time in Italy, going to medical school was a good route if you were interested in research – as PhD programs were not well established yet. Fortunately, I was offered a great opportunity to do a fellowship at the University of California in San Francisco (UCSF) – and that’s where the VEGF story began. In those early years at UCSF working on neuroendocrinology, I came across an intriguing finding: pituitary cells seemed to be stimulating blood vessel growth. I tested pituitary cell supernatant on endothelial cells, and to my surprise there was strong angiogenic activity. I speculated that it could lead to something interesting, so I began to follow it up.
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