He graduated in theoretical physics at the Universita’ di Roma “Sapienza University of Rome” in 1958 under the supervision of Bruno Touschek.
In 1963, while working at CERN, Cabibbo found the solution to the puzzle of the weak decays of strange particles. Formulating what came to be known as Cabibbo universality. In 1967 Nicola settled back in Rome where he taught theoretical physics and created a large school with younger colleagues and brilliant students.
He was president of the INFN from 1983 to 1992, during which time the Gran Sasso Laboratory was inaugurated. He was also president of the Italian energy agency, ENEA, from 1993 to 1998, and was president of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences from 1993 until his death. In 2004, Cabibbo spent a year at CERN as guest professor.
He died from respiratory problems in a Rome hospital on August 16, 2010 at the age of 75.
Lincean Academy; Pontifical Academy of Sciences. National Academy of Sciences. American Academy of Arts and Sciences.