PASEF Luncheon, May 21, 2010

Nicholas Kefalides, Professor of Medicine specializing in infectious disease, will discuss his recent book "Echoes from the Cobblestones: A Memoir". His story begins with the 1930s as war raged in Europe. Italy invades Greece in 1940 and Germany invades in 1941. Dr. Kefalides and his brother join their country's resistance movement and fight back. They are arrested and imprisoned by the Gestapo before being sent to a concentration camp in Thessaloniki but survive the war. Decades later, after a successful career in medicine in the U.S., Dr. Kefalides reflects back on a period in the 1940s when starvation and loss of freedom led to restrictions of everyday life.

After arriving in the USA, Dr. Kefalides pursued his medical training and after his internship in 1957, he joined NIH and was sent to Lima, Peru, to direct a US government project on the treatment of burns. Later, his research at Penn focused on studies of the cell and molecular biology of extracellular matrix, especially the structure and function of basement membrane components such as type IV collagen and laminin and their role in cell adhesion and tumor metastasis. In 1973, his paper on the structure and biosynthesis of basement membranes in Int. Rev. Connect. Tissue Res. was named a citation classic for having been the most cited paper in the journal. The data presented were largely from the work of Dr. Kefalides and established for the first time the existence of a new collagen (Type IV) found exclusively in basement membranes.

For several years, Dr. Kefalides has developed the speaker program for both PASEF and ASEF and he is President-Elect for the Association of Senior and Emeritus Faculty (ASEF) in the School of Medicine.

The luncheon is at 11:45 A.M. on Friday, May 21, 2010, in the Lenape Room of the University Club. More information.