Rome, 30 August (AKI) - World-famous architect Renzo Piano, physics Nobel Prize-winner Carlo Rubbia, stem-cell pioneer Elenea Cattaneo and conductor Claudio Abbado were appointed Life Senators on Friday by Italian president Giorgio Napolitano. Piano, Rubbia, Cattaneo and Abbado had distinguished themselves for "for outstanding merits in the social, scientific, artistic and literary field," Napolitano stated. They join former Italian president Carlo Azeglio Ciampi and ex-premier Mario Monti in the upper house of parliament. Announcing the appointments, Napolitano said he was filling gaps "sadly left" by the deaths over the past year of seven-times premier Giulio Andreotti, Nobel medicine laureate Rita Levi-Montalcini, former prime minister Emilio Colombo and car designer Sergio Pininfarina. Piano was one of the creators of the futuristic Pompidou Centre in Paris, and Abbado is former director of the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra.