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Elena Ottolenghi Nightingale

Elena Ottolenghi Nightingale, American pediatric geneticist, academic administrator, educator. Recipient Walsh McDermott medal, Institute Medicine, 2006.


  • Nightingale, Elena Ottolenghi was born on November 1, 1932 in Livorno, Italy. Arrived in the United States, 1939, naturalized. Daughter of Mario Lazzaro and Elisa Vittoria (Levi) Ottolenghi.

  • Education

    • AB summa cum laude, Barnard College, 1954. Doctor of Philosophy, Rockefeller University, 1961. Doctor of Medicine, New York University, 1964.


    • Assistant professor Cornell University Medical College, New York City, 1965—1970, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, 1970—1973. Fellow in clinical genetics and pediatrics Georgetown University Hospital, Washington, 1973—1974. Senior staff officer National Academy of Sciences, 1975—1977, senior program officer Institute Medicine, 1977—1982, senior scholar-in-residence, 1982—1983.

      Special advisor to president Carnegie Corporation New York, New York City, 1983—1994, senior program officer, 1989—1994. Scholar-in-residence Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, Washington, since 1995. Visiting associate professor Harvard Medical School, Boston, 1980—1984, visiting lecturer, 1984—1995.

      Adjunct professor pediatrics Georgetown University Medical Center, since 1984, George Washington University Medical Center, since 1994. Member recombinant DNA advisory committee National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland, 1979—1983.


    • Editor: The Breaking of Bodies and Minds: Torture, Psychiatric Abuses and the Health Professions, 1985, Prenatal Screening, Policies and Values: The Example of Neural Tube Defects, 1987, Promoting the Health of Adolescents: New Directions for the 21st Century, 1993, Adolescent Risk and Vulnerability: Concepts and Measurement, 2001. Co-author: Before Birth: Prenatal Screening for Genetic Disease, 1990. Contributor numerous science articles to professional publications.


    Board directors Amnesty International, United States of America, Washington, 1989—1991, Center for Youth Services, Washington, 1980—1984, Science Service, Inc., Washington, 1985—1996. Fellow: American Association for the Advancement of Science (chairman committee on science freedom and responsibility 1985-1988), New York Academy of Sciences. Member: Institute Medicine of National Academy of Sciences (chairman committee on health and human rights 1987-1990), Genetics Society of America, American Society Human Genetics (social issues committee 1982-1985), American Society Microbiology, Sigma Xi, Phi Beta Kappa.


    • Married Suart L. Nightingale, July 1, 1965. Children: Elizabeth, Marisa.
    • father: Mario Lazzaro Ottolenghi
    • mother: Elisa Vittoria (Levi) Ottolenghi
    • spouse: Suart L. Nightingale
    • children: Elizabeth Nightingale
    • Marisa Nightingale
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    Born November 1, 1932
    • 1954
      Barnard College
    • 1961
      Rockefeller University
    • 1964
      New York University
    • 1965 - 1970
      Assistant, professor Cornell University Medical College
    • 1970 - 1973
      Assistant, professor Cornell University Medical College
      Baltimore, Maryland, United States
    • 1973 - 1974
      fellow, in clinical genetics and pediatrics Georgetown University Hospital
      Washington, United States
    • 1983 - 1994
      special advisor, to president Carnegie Corporation New York
    • 1995
      scholar, -in-residence Institute of Medicine
      Washington, United States
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