Lucio Luzzatto

Direttore Operativo Gianni Amunni

He was born in Genoa, Italy, on September 28th 1936. He is married to Pala Caboara and has two children, Stefano and Fatima.
He graduated from the University of Genoa Medical School in 1959.
He specialized in Haematology in Pavia and at the Columbia University, New York.

He was awarded his Professorship in Biochemistry in 1968

He was first Assistant and then Professor of Haematology at Ibadan University, Nigeria, from 1964 to 1974.

He was Director of the International Institute of Genetics and Biophysics at the CNR (National Research Centre) in Naples from 1974 to 1981.

In 1981 he succeded Sir John Dacie as Professor of Haematology and Director of the Haematology Department of the Royal Postgraduate Medical School of the Hammersmith Hospital, London.

In 1994 he was appointed Professor and first Director of the Human Genetics Department at the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, New York.

He was Scientific Director of the National Cancer Research Institute in Genoa from 2000 to 2004 and became Professor of Haematology at Genoa University in 2002.
He received an FRC Path in 1982 and an FRCP in 1983
He has a medical licensure in Italy, Nigeria, United Kingdom and in the State of New York.

He was awarded an honoris causa Degree in Pharmacy by Urbino University in 1990, and an honorary DSc by Ibadan University (Nigeria) in 1998.
He is a honorary member of the American Haematology Association.
He was the first President and founder of the Nigerian Haematology Association, President of the Italian Genetics Association, Chairman of the Ethics Committee of the American Gene Therapy Association. He has been a member of EMBO since 1979, of HUGO since 1990 and of the American Association of Physicians.
Lucio Luzzatto holds multiple honours and awards, including the William Dameshek Medal (1975), the Pius XI Medal (1976) and the Josč Carreras Medal (2002).

In 2004 he was elected Foreign Member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
In teaching and research, Lucio Luzzatto's main objective has always been the understanding of human diseases at the molecular level, and all along his career he has constantly combined scientific work and clinical practice.
Major areas of contribution:

  1. Molecular genetics, clinical features and population genetics of glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD): this was the first human enzyme for which molecular cloning was obtained in 1986 with M.G. Persico.
  2. Genetics of haemoglobin disorders and hereditary susceptibility in malaria. Since the late 60s, Lucio Luzzatto's team has contributed to the elucidation of the mechanism through which different genes expressed in the blood red cells confer relative resistance against Plasmodium falciparum-related mortality.
    In 2000 Lucio Luzzatto has collaborated with M. Sadelain to develop a mouse experimental model to correct thalassemia by gene therapy.
  3. Pathogenesis, molecular foundations and clinical features of paroxysmal nocturnal haemoglobinuria (PNH).
    Lucio Luzzatto and his co-workers were the first to provide the evidence of the clonal nature of the condition. Later his group identified the underlying chemical abnormality and with Bruno Rotoli has developed the current commonly accepted model to explain the expansion of PNH clones.

Lucio Luzzatto has published about 300 papers in international scientific journals and many chapters in major textbooks.