Tributes to Mumna Al Banchaabouchi from the EMBL community

“It was with deep sadness that we learned that Mumna passed away. We were colleagues and friends, sharing offices and daily ups and downs. Mumna had always patience to listen and to help, with a constant and reassuring smile. Our thoughts are with Mumna's family.”
Arianna Nenci and Jose G. Gonzalez, 8 March 2018

“I had the honour to know Mumna when she was in Monterotondo. She asked me some statistical advice and came to my lab. I was immediately conquered by her open smile and evident purity of soul. She gave me the opportunity to give two courses in statistics in Monterotondo and I remember every single day of that time: we talked a lot and laughed a lot. She had this precious gift of keeping together a great love of her work and a substantial detachment allowing her not to become boring and narrow minded 'work addicted' - in few words she was a real scientist and much more. I will never forget a great night in the centre of Roma with Mumna and other EMBL fellows talking about our religion and culture...but even of hilarious anecdotes of our life...

Requiem aeterna dona ea Domine
Et lux perpetua luceat ea
Requiescat in pace”
Giuliani Alessandro, 7 March 2018

"We were deeply saddened to hear about Mumna passing away. We will always remember her with great affection. We had the privilege of working together in several occasions for the European projects EUMORPHIA and EUMODIC on mouse behavioral phenotyping. She has always been a very kind, dedicated and honest collaborator. We particularly remember her attention and kindness toward everybody. Her enthusiasm for science, friendliness and strength will be surely missed.

Our thoughts and prayers are with her family."
Silvia Mandillo and Elisabetta Golini, 7 March 2018

“Mumna was one of the first people at EMBL I have ever interacted with. We met before the EMBL adventure, at the demo of an automated cage system for behavioural studies. She was incredibly enthusiastic and easy to talk to and we got along soon.

When a year later I started my PhD in Monterotondo, I met her again and at that time she was the head of the Mouse Phenotyping Facility. As one of my projects required a lot of behavioural studies, I had the opportunity to spend a lot of time in the facility working with Mumna. She thought me everything I know about these type of studies, and more importantly she thought me to respect these animals and to learn as much as possible from them.

She loved science and we spent lots of time discussing every single observation we had from the experiments. I remember Mumna always smiley, always available, always so honest and always enthusiastic about every aspect of science. 

I still cannot believe I will not see her smile again. I am sure that like me all the people who had the chance to meet her will always remember her beautiful soul. She will be missed very much.”
Adriana Gambardella, 4 March 2018

“I was deeply shocked and sad to hear of the death of our friend and colleague Mumna. I have known her from my time at the EMBL in Monterotondo, Italy. Although I knew she was fighting a bad battle, I always tried to give her courage and strength to fight. I myself believed that she would make it successfully… but this one was, unfortunately, a tough one...

I am grateful to have met her, she was a great friend and a colleague. I will always remember her grace and enthusiasm. My thoughts are with her family and friends.”
Liliana Minichiello, 4 March 2018

“I had the privilege to work very closely with Mumna between 2006 and 2012 at the EMBL Rome. She was very passionate and serious about her work. She loved animals and made sure everybody treated our experimental mice with respect. As a boss, she gave me ample opportunities to learn and develop my skills. Everything she did was done with enthusiasm, a sense of humor and a can-do attitude. She was a great friend and will be sorely missed.”
Dominika Farley, 2 March 2018

“It is a really sad to hear about Mumna passing away. I had the privilege to know and work with Mumna on a project at EMBL Monterotondo in 2009. Her enthusiasm for science and positivity always put me in a good mood; her gentle character was perfectly in harmony with firmness, professionality and eagerness to move on and complete projects. I will always remember her smile.”
Oxana Bereshchenko, 2 March 2018

“This is very bad news. I knew Mumna when I worked at Monterotondo outstation between 2003 and 2005. Besides her excellent skills I remember her as very kind and calm person. I am very sorry for her premature death. My condolences for the family’s loss.”
Pieranna Chiarella, 1 March 2018

“I am saddened by our loss. I had the pleasure of working with and learning from Mumna in Monterotondo. She was a lovely person, and a generous, talented, thorough, and dedicated scientist, who influenced me, even long after leaving the EMBL Rome. I am grateful to have known her. My deepest condolences to her family and loved ones.”
Carla Sciarretta, 1 March 2018

“It is with pain and sadness that I learn about the passing of Mumna Al Banchaabouchi. I was an EIPOD post-doc at EMBL Monterotondo from 2008 to 2011, where I worked with Mumna on the phenotyping of heart-specific mIGF-1 transgenic mice, which had also a behavioral phenotype. Mumna was an extraordinary person, full of positivity, optimism and kindness. Extremely competent and rigorous in her job, and friendly and funny outside of it. I left EMBL in 2011 to move as Principal Investigator at UCL in the UK, but we have kept in touch until the beginning of 2016, when she informed me of the finding of a liver metastasis, after the first cycle of chemo. The cancer therapy made her sensitive and unable to work anymore with animals, so she moved to another position in Vienna. She then struggled with her battle that she eventually lost. As all of you, I will miss Mumna, her attitude towards life and that beautiful smile.”
Manlio Vinciguerra, 1 March 2018