Essential facts on Francesco Bellini
Following the announcement that Francesco Bellini is the lead benefactor behind McGill's new life sciences bldg., here are a few biographical details on the Montreal scientist and businessman.
Biographical details on the lead benefactor behind McGill's new life sciences building.
Francesco Bellini, a Montreal scientist and businessman, has made a lasting impact on world health with his contributions to the fields of therapeutics, vaccines and diagnostics.
Through BioChem Pharma, the Montreal-based firm he co-founded in 1986 that is now a part of Shire BioChem, Dr. Bellini catapulted Canadian biopharmaceutical research to global prominence. By the late 1980s, in collaboration with the late Dr. Bernard Belleau, a McGill graduate and chemistry professor, and Dr. Gervais Dionne, Dr. Bellini developed and commercialized 3TC. The drug was the first anti-HIV compound. Today, 3TC remains the cornerstone of combination HIV/AIDS infection therapies. Another major discovery for Dr. Bellini and BioChem Pharma was Zeffix, the only approved oral treatment for chronic hepatitis B (HBV). In 2001, Dr. Bellini launched a new private company, Picchio International Inc., which is also based in Montreal.
Academic History and Achievements
Born in 1947 in Ascoli Piceno, Italy, Dr. Bellini immigrated to Canada in 1967. He received his B.Sc. from Concordia University in 1972 and his Ph.D. in organic chemistry from the University of New Brunswick in 1977. He is the author or co-author of some twenty patents and has published numerous articles and publications based on his research. Dr. Bellini has received many awards and honours, including the Onorificenza Di Grande Ufficiale (1997), the highest distinction awarded by the Italian Government to a civilian for his contribution in or outside Italy. In 2000, Dr. Bellini was made an Officer of the Order of Canada.
Personal History and Commitments
Dr. Bellini sits on the boards of several prestigious companies and organizations, and has been an active volunteer in supporting Montreal hospitals, universities and community-based organizations. Francesco Bellini and his wife Marisa have two sons, Roberto, a Biochemistry student at McGill and Carlo, a CEGEP student. The family resides in Town of Mount Royal.