Fondazione Umberto Di Mario was founded in 2000 on the initiative of a group of exponents from the scientific world in Italy, who were united by the common goal of actively promoting research, study and training in the biomedical sector.
In the choice of its name and in the carrying out of its activities, the Foundation is inspired by the example and testimony of one of its founders, Prof. Umberto Di Mario, an illustrious physician and Professor of Endocrinology at La Sapienza University in Rome as well as the Chairman of the Società Italiana di Diabetologia (Italian Society of Diabetology).
During his years as a university professor and scientist, Prof. Di Mario dedicated his work, life and social efforts to a clear yet ambitious project: "Fostering quality of life with research", in other words "motivating and directing the enthusiasm and creativity of talented persons coming from different training experiences towards a new scientific research ideal, understood, in a broad sense, as a means of critical reflection on the basic values of the individual and humanity as a whole, as well as a key factor in the sustainable progress of a healthy civil, free and dynamic society."
In short, a new frontier destined to morally, socially and politically characterise the civilization that we live in.
Upon the death of Prof. Di Mario, on 16 February 2004, the group of exponents from the scientific world in Italy who had founded the Foundation, took their cue from his experience and established the creation of this project as a fundamental goal.
The Foundation therefore works within a very concrete and practical sphere and tries to compensate for the insufficient support of public institutions in the area of scientific research. In fact, without scientific research, no progress is made in the biomedical sciences and Italy risks depending completely on foreign countries for new biotechnologies. It is therefore fundamental for the Foundation to support the scientific ideas and projects presented by young researchers to offer them a concrete alternative to work at foreign centers, as a definitive choice. This is an innovative way to take advantage of young talents.
The resources of the Foundation are directed exclusively at making progress in research, in every possible area of the biomedical sciences, in its countless scientific, social, moral and legal applications and implications.
Therefore, the funds that are collected are allocated to projects evaluated by a Scientific Committee, based on the principles of the so-called "Translational Medicine" challenge, an area of study that acts as a bridge, transferring research results from the laboratory to the patient's bed. Quality and excellence in assistance and diagnosis – during and after illness – can be achieved, in fact, if the patient is at the centre not just of his therapy, but also of the efforts of researchers and doctors.
Cutting-edge scientific research is higher quality and more productive when it can avail itself of the enthusiasm and creativity of researchers who come from different training backgrounds. Recognizing the added value of the ideal of "participation" and "sharing", Fondazione Umberto Di Mario therefore promotes, in an entirely free manner, every occasion for exchange and comparison between scholars of every nation, as well as every training-information initiative, especially with regard to those themes that are dear to its founders: Diabetology and Metabolic Illnesses, Endocrinology, Digestive Gastroenterology, Immunology, Vascular Cardiology and Oncology.
In the choice of its name and the carrying out of its activities, the Foundation is inspired by the ambitious objectives of one of its founders, Prof. Umberto di Mario:
- To transfer biotechnological research to the patient's bed by exclusively supporting "Translational Medicine" projects an area of study that acts as a bridge transferring research results from the laboratory to the patient's bed.
- To set aside collected funds for projects evaluated by a Scientific Committee made up of Italian professionals not widely known in their sectors.
- To set aside funds to support young Italian researchers through internships and research assignments but, above all, by financing their ideas; in fact, only by supporting young talents will it be possible to create a critical mass of scientists who are able to reach innovative research goals.
- To avoid wasting money with organisational superstructures. Essentially, more than 95% of the resources are reinvested in projects.
- To compensate for the lack of public investments and the poor management/distribution of resources. The contributions and achieved results will be publicised to ensure maximum transparency.
Board of Directors
Prof Francesco Dotta (Presidente)
Prof Davide Lauro (Segretario Generale)
Prof.ssa Livia Biancone (Consigliere)
Prof.ssa Elisabetta Ferretti (Consigliere)
Prof Cosimo Durante (Consigliere)
Prof Alfonso Bellia
Prof.ssa Emma Calabrese
Prof Fabrizio Conti
Prof.ssa Monica D'Adamo
Prof Luigi Gennari
Prof Marco Gessi
Prof.ssa Evelina Miele
Prof.ssa Laura Nigi
Prof.ssa Carmelina Petruzziello
Prof.ssa Agnese Po
Prof Diego Russo
Prof Paolo Sbraccia
Prof Guido Sebastiani
Prof.ssa Alessandra Vacca
International Advisory Board Honorary Committee
Prof Orlo Clark
Prof Emilio D'Erasmo
Prof Cecilia Fondelli
Prof Robert F. Gagel
Prof Renato Lauro
Prof Melissa Sandra McLachlan
Prof Yehuda Shoenfeld