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Levi-Montalcini, Rita(lā`vē-mŏn'təlsē`nē), 1909–2012, Italian-American neurologist, b. Turin, Italy, M.D. Univ. of Turin, 1936. A dual citizen of Italy and the United States, Levi-Montalcini did her most important work with Stanley CohenCohen, Stanley,
1922–, American biochemist, b. New York City, Ph.D. Univ. of Michigan, 1948. Cohen did his most important work at Washington Univ. with Rita Levi-Montalcini in the 1950s.
..... Click the link for more information. at Washington Univ., where she was a professor from 1956 to 1977. Studying mouse tumors implanted in chicken embryos, the pair isolated a nerve growth factor, the first of many cell growth factors found in animals; some of these were also first described by Levi-Montalcini and by Cohen. The discovery of nerve growth factor radically changed the study of cell growth and development. For this discovery Levi-Montalcini and Cohen were awarded the 1986 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine.
See her autobiography, In Praise of Imperfection (1988).