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On June 17 in Ferrara, Italy, Professor Laura Ramaciotti, Rector of the University of Ferrara, presented Distinguished Professor and Executive Vice Dean of the USC Leonard Davis School of Gerontology Kelvin J. A. Davies with the Nicolaus Copernicus Medal, “In appreciation of his scientific excellence.”

The Copernicus Medal is the highest award of the University of Ferrara, which was established in 1391. The award was made in front of an international audience of some 300 scientists who were attending a University of Ferrara-sponsored conference entitled, “The Future of Redox Biology.” Davies was lauded for his pioneering research in the discipline of Redox Biology, and his leadership in the field. Davies is among the world’s leading experts on free radicals, oxidative stress, redox regulation, and adaptation biology and medicine. His research focuses on redox-regulated signal transduction pathways and the expression of oxidative stress protective and repair genes during aging.

Nicolaus Copernicus was a Renaissance polymath, active as a mathematician, astronomer, and Catholic canon, who formulated a model of the universe that placed the Sun rather than Earth at its center. Copernicus was born in 1473, in Toruń, a city in north-central Poland on the Vistula River south of the major Baltic seaport of Gdańsk. He studied liberal arts—including astronomy and astrology—at the University of Cracow (Kraków), at the University of Bologna, Italy, and at the University of Padua, Italy. He finally received his Doctorate in Canon Law from the University of Ferrara, where he is still venerated today.

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