Napoleone Ferrara MD

Recipient of the Canada Gairdner International Award, 2014
"For discovering Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF), a key molecular mediator of new blood vessel formation and the development of effective anti-VEGF therapy for cancer and wet macular degeneration"

Distinguished Professor of Pathology
Senior Deputy Director for Basic Sciences
UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center

Dr. Ferrara earned his M.D. degree in 1981 from the University of Catania Medical School in Italy.  After completing his postdoctoral research at the University of California, San Francisco, he joined Genentech Inc. in 1988.  It is there where he spent nearly 25 years working on the molecular characterization and therapeutic applications of VEGF-A, which resulted in the development of bevacizumab, the first anti-angiogenic agent to be approved by the FDA for cancer therapy.  His research also led to the development of ranibizumab, which has been FDA-approved for the treatment of multiple intraocular neovascular disorders.  In January 2013, Dr. Ferrara joined the University of California, San Diego as a Distinguished Professor of Pathology, Distinguished Adjunct Professor of Ophthalmology and Senior Deputy Director for Basic Sciences of the Moores Cancer Center.

Dr. Ferrara has authored over 300 scientific publications.  He is also the recipient of numerous awards including the Lefoulon-Delalande-Institut-de-France Prize, the Passano Award, the General Motors Cancer Research Award, the ASCO Science of Oncology Award, the Pezcoller Foundation-AACR International Award, the Lasker-deBakey Clinical Medical Research Award, the Dr. Paul Janssen Award, the Economist Innovation Award and the inaugural Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences.  Dr. Ferrara has been a member of the National Academy of Sciences, USA, since 2006.



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