This short overview and updates expresses our brain-and-heart homage to George Emil Palade, “the most influential cell biologist ever”. In his 1971 paper Palade wrote for Albert Claude, the founder of biological electron microscopic method: “Seldom has a field owed so much to a single man”. Herein, we articulate the same words for George Palade, the Teacher of many generations in cell biology research and education. Accordingly, we focus on two paradigm shifts in the cell biology, namely (i) the transition from light to transmission electron microscopy in studying cell protein secretion made by George Palade, and (ii) the transition from contractile to secretory phenotype of vascular smooth muscle cells made by Maria Daria Haust followed and developed by our research group. Altogether, we argue that one of the present challenges in vascular biology is to cultivate secreto-centric thinking and thus further focusing on how we could make the vascular muscle’s secretory pathways work for the benefit of human’s cardiovascular health.
*1 Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, and Department of Translational Stem Cell Biology, Research Institute, Medical University, Varna, Bulgaria
2 Fondazione Iret Tecnopolo R. Levi-Montalcini, Rome, Italy
3 Department of Pathology, Faculty of Medicine, Semmelweis University, Budapest, Hungary
4 Department of Pathology, Medical University, Varna, Bulgaria
5 Institute of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, Section of Neurobiology, National Research Council (CNR), Rome, Italy
6 Department of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Faculty of Public Health, Medical University, Varna, Bulgaria
7 Department of Cardiac Surgery, St Marina University Hospital, Varna, Bulgaria