Golgi: A Biography of the Founder of Modern Neuroscience

Hardcover | November 27, 2009

byPaolo Mazzarello

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This book is a complete biography of Camillo Golgi one of the most prominent European researcher between the Nineteenth and the Twentieth century, a period of dramatic scientific development. The life of Golgi was an extraordinary intellectual adventure in three major fields of biology andmedicine, namely the neuroscience, the emerging cell biology and the new science of medical microbiology.In 1873 Golgi published the description of a revolutionary histological technique which allowed, for the first time, to visualize a single nerve cell with all its ramification which could be followed and analyzed even at a great distance from the cell bodies, the so called "black reaction" (laternamed the "Golgi method"). This invention provided the spark to a truly scientific revolution which allowed the morphology and the basic architecture of the cerebral tissue to be evidenced in all its complexity, thus contributing to the foundation of the modern neuroscience. It has been writtenthat, in the same way Galileo Galilei was able to find new stars observing with his telescope any sky region, Golgi was able to find new nervous structures and nerve cells by applying his black reaction to any brain region. Finally, the details of the most complex structure in the known universe,the brain, could be characterized. Golgi also strongly contributed to the development of cell biology with the discovery of one of the major organelles of the cell, the "internal reticular apparatus" (later named the "Golgi apparatus" or the "Golgi complex" or simply "the Golgi") and to medical microbiology with his description ofthe human malaria parasitic development inside the red blood cells (Golgi cycle). He was also a prominent political figure who deeply influenced the Nineteenth century development of science in Italy.

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This book is a complete biography of Camillo Golgi one of the most prominent European researcher between the Nineteenth and the Twentieth century, a period of dramatic scientific development. The life of Golgi was an extraordinary intellectual adventure in three major fields of biology andmedicine, namely the neuroscience, the emergin...

Paolo Mazzarello, MD PhD is Professor of History of Medicine at the University of Pavia, Italy. He is the author of five books on history of Medicine and science in Eighteenth and Nineteenth century. He wrote for Nature, Endeavour and Trends in Neuroscience. His hometown is Mornese (prov. Alessandria, Italy).

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:528 pages, 9.25 × 6.13 × 0.98 inPublished:November 27, 2009Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0195337840

ISBN - 13:9780195337846

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Table of Contents

1. Introduction: Between revolution and conservatism2. "He who studies German is a traitor"3. The Reborn Athens4. The histological path to the secrets of the brain5. A rudimentary laboratory in a small kitchen6. Like a tree in the forest7. Globules, granules and fibers8. Finding a way out of the labyrinth9. The Professor is in love10. Sensory corpuscles, funnels and transfusions11. Neuroanatomical investigations12. Controversies and various studies13. The secret of the intermittent fevers14. A duel for Anna Kulischioff15. The Malaria of the Polemics16. The prophets of the neuron17. Seemingly a matter of priority18. Protoplasmic pantheism19. Golgi versus Ramon y Cajal: Holism versus reductionism at the dawn of the neurosciences20. The historical paradox of neurosciences21. An intense laboratory life22. The threat from Milan23. An Elegant Reticulum "Hidden in the Cell Body"24. The laboratory where a discovery is made every day25. Beauty and Cold in Stockholm26. Back to Research27. Years of sorrow28. The veil of Isis29. Working unto deathAppendixPublications by Camillo GolgiBibliographyIndex of NamesIndex