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W dniu 9 listopada 2018 r. zmarł w Gliwcach prof. dr hab. Stanisław Ryszard Szala, naukowiec związany przez całe swoje twórcze życie z Instytutem Onkologii w Gliwicach. 

Swego Ucznia, i Wspólpracownika wspomina Profesor - Senior Mieczyslaw Chorąży.

Pochylamy głowę w zadumie!

 

PROFESSOR STANISŁAW RYSZARD SZALA

16 MAY 1942 - 9 NOVEMBER 2018

 

Non omnis moriar…

Horatio

Professor Stanisław (Stan) Szala was an eminent Polish biologist and long-time research professor at the Maria Skłodowska-Curie Memorial Institute in Gliwice.

He was born during the 2nd World War years in Krzemieniec, a historic town in Eastern Poland (now in Western Ukraine). His youth years were spent in Gorzów Wielkopolski, a city on the western fringes of Poland, where so many Poles relocated after the end of war. He went to a music school and, after graduating from high school, he studied at the Department of Biology and Earth Sciences, University of Łódź, majoring in Biochemistry.

In 1965 he joined the Institute of Oncology in Gliwice. He spent there 43 productive years, starting as an assistant, later a research associate and finally becoming a full-time professor in 1987. During his research years he stayed at the University of Edinburgh, Institut de Biologie Moleculaire (currently Institut Jacques Monod) in Paris, NIH in Bethesda, The Fibiger Laboratory in Copenhagen and The Wistar Institute in Philadelphia.

Professor Stanisław Szala was a long-time Head of the Laboratory of Molecular Biology at the Research Division of the Institute of Oncology in Gliwice and also its Research Director in the nineteen nineties.

His scientific interests gradually evolved at the pace of development of modern molecular biology tools. From identification of repetitive sequences in the rat genome through identification and isolation of genes linked to colon carcinoma, Professor Szala and his team pursued in the nineteen nineties gene therapy and exploration of recombinant antiangiogenic proteins, to gradually move into the emerging field of experimental cancer immunotherapy. He devoted a lot of efforts to studies of therapeutics acting specifically on tumor vasculature.

Professor Szala authored more than 120 research papers, some in the top journals like Nature, PNAS and Gene Therapy. As an educator, he supervised 21 PhD theses and more than 60 Master dissertations. He had an extensive scientific knowledge of cancer biology and both theoretical and practical expertise in several molecular biology techniques. A meticulous, precise and excellent organizer, in his younger years he loved to experiment himself accepting no compromise in research standards. His office door was always open to share knowledge.

Stanisław Szala was a fellow citizen awarded with Gold Cross of Merit and Knight’s Cross of the Order of Polonia Restituta. [...] He was a member of Polish Academy of Arts and Sciences and was recognized with numerous awards from home and foreign institutions.

Beyond that, having been above all a true man of science, he read nonetheless contemporary poetry and prose, and wrote essays himself. He loved classical music, especially Bach’s. He enjoyed unusual forms offered by watercolor painting. Last but not least, being a talented cook, he captivated friends with exotic dishes.

Our senior colleague and friend, he will be missed as man of scientific authority, remembered for his admirable sense of reality but always dreaming high. In his relentless pursuit for knowledge he was a respectable man, not devoid of a great sense of humor.

He passed away, too soon perhaps, on 9th of November 2018.

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