Peter Pettinato is New UNICO Cooley’s Anemia Chair

September 28, 2011 – UNICO National, an Italian-American service organization which is one of CAF’s allies in the fight against thalassemia, recently appointed Dr. Peter Pettinato as its new Chair for Cooley’s anemia. Below, Dr. Pettinato answers a few questions from CAF.


Peter Pettinato

CAF: How did you become the new UNICO chair for Cooley’s anemia?

Dr. Pettinato: I have been a member of the Committee itself since the early 90’s. I have the most science based education of the Committee members, and my cousin Glenn Pettinato, who is the National President, asked me to Chair the Committee.

Can you tell us a little about your interest in or involvement in Cooley’s anemia?

I didn’t even know about Cooley’s anemia until I joined UNICO. I found it both fascinating and disturbing that a disease such as this could be one of those “unknown to the public diseases.” It was heartening to learn that UNICO was helping lead the way on the research for better treatments and an eventual cure.

How can people get involved in helping UNICO help fight thalassemia?

The best way to help would be to hold a specific fundraiser(s) for UNICO National’s Cooley’s Anemia Charity. Donations made to the UNICO Foundation earmarked for Cooley’s anemia go directly to Cooley’s anemia research, and several projects underway right now are extremely promising.

How long have you been a member of UNICO?

I have been a member of UNICO since June of 1989. My cousin Glenn wasted no time after my veterinary school graduation to take me to a UNICO meeting. Seems I have trouble saying NO to Glenn. It’s a good thing too, because I enjoy my affiliation with UNICO so very much.

What do you like best about UNICO?

The best thing about UNICO to me is the selfless acts its members make to raise money and help people they have never and likely will never meet. They do it merely because it requires doing and to help people in need.

Do you have a message for people with thalassemia?

We will never stop looking for a cure. With organizations like CAF and UNICO working together, we will find one, hopefully soon.

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