October 30, 2019
5 min read

Hematologists, oncologists elected to National Academy of Medicine

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The National Academy of Medicine announced the election of 90 regular members and 10 international members.

Election to the academy — considered one of the highest honors in health and medicine — recognizes individuals who demonstrated outstanding professional achievement and commitment to service.

“These newly elected members represent the most exceptional scholars and leaders whose remarkable work has advanced science, medicine and health in the U.S. and around the globe,” Victor J. Dzau, MD, president of National Academy of Medicine, said in a press release. “Their expertise will be vital to addressing today’s most pressing health and scientific challenges and informing the future of health and medicine for the benefit of us all. I am honored to welcome these esteemed individuals to the National Academy of Medicine.”

The academy now has more than 2,200 members, including approximately 180 international members.

Newly elected members recognized for contributions related to hematology and oncology include:

Denise R. Aberle, MD, professor of radiology and bioengineering and vice chair for research/radiological sciences at David Geffen School of Medicine at University of California, Los Angeles. She led the NCI-sponsored National Lung Screening Trial, which showed low-dose CT screening reduced lung cancer mortality by 20% compared with chest radiographic screening.

Charles S. Abrams, MD, Francis C. Wood professor of medicine in the departments of medicine, pathology, and laboratory medicine at Perelman School of Medicine at University of Pennsylvania. He launched an initiative to improve the lives of patients with sickle cell disease worldwide.

Nita Ahuja, MD, MBA, William H. Carmalt professor of surgery and chair of the department of surgery at Yale School of Medicine. Ahuja’s work improved understanding of the cells of origin in multiple tumor types, and the role of epigenetic dysregulation in gastrointestinal cancers. This led to the development of biomarkers for early detection of colorectal and pancreatic cancers, as well as epigenetic therapeutics.

Sangeeta Bhatia, MD, PhD, John J. and Dorothy Wilson professor at Institute for Medical Engineering and Science and Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Bhatia pioneered small-scale technologies to interface cells with synthetic platforms. This work has applications in cancer therapy, liver tissue regeneration and diagnostics.

Marina Cavazzana, MD, PhD, professor of hematology at Paris University Medical School, head of the biotherapy department at Hôpital Necker-Enfants malades, Assistance Publique — Hôpitaux de Paris, and director of Clinical Investigation Center for Innovative Therapies at Imagine Institute in Paris. Cavazzana revolutionized the treatment of severe inherited blood disorders, and pioneering gene therapy clinical trials to cure rare immunodeficiencies based on her expertise on hematopoietic stem cells.


Raymond N. DuBois Jr., MD, PhD, dean of the College of Medicine and professor of biochemistry and medicine at The Medical University of South Carolina. He discovered the critical and mechanistic role of prostaglandins/cyclooxygenase in colon cancer and its malignant progression, leading to the common use of drugs that target the prostaglandins pathway for cancer prevention.

Betty R. Ferrell, PhD, FAAN, director and professor of the division of nursing research and education at City of Hope. She was recognized for her pioneering work in the fields of palliative and end-of-life care, as well as developing and leading the End-of-Life Nursing Education Consortium.

Margaret Anne Goodell, PhD, chair of the department of molecular and cellular biology, and professor at Center for Cell and Gene Therapy at Baylor College of Medicine. Goodell discovered fundamental principles underlying differentiation and self-renewal of hematopoietic stem cells, revealing how epigenetic regulation is required for differentiation and how the immune system coordinates hematopoietic regeneration in response to pathogens.

Stephan A. Grupp, MD, PhD, Novotny professor of pediatrics at Perelman School of Medicine at University of Pennsylvania, and section chief of cellular therapy and transplant and director of the cancer immunotherapy program at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. He pioneered the development of a novel therapy for acute lymphoblastic leukemia and led the first global engineered cell therapy trial that demonstrated effective sustained ALL remissions.

J. Silvio Gutkind, PhD, distinguished professor in the department of pharmacology and associate director of basic science at Moores Cancer Center at University of California, San Diego. Gutkind was recognized for contributions to the understanding of cancer signaling networks, and for pioneering the study of the PIK3CA-mTOR signaling circuitry in oral cancer and head and neck cancer progression, metastasis, and therapy resistance.

Daphne Adele Haas-Kogan, MD, professor of radiation oncology at Harvard Medical School and chair of the department of radiation oncology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Boston Children’s Hospital. She was recognized for research on the study of genetic abnormalities of brain tumors and successfully translating laboratory discoveries to the treatment of cancer, which led to clinical trials that helped shape targeted therapies.

M. Elizabeth Halloran, MD, DSc, professor of biostatistics at University of Washington and full member of the vaccine and infectious disease division at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. She was recognized for leading the development of statistical methods and modeling for evaluating vaccines in populations, and contributions to evaluating direct and indirect effects of vaccines and improving design and analysis of vaccine studies.


Elizabeth M. Jaffee, MD, Dana and Albert “Cubby” Broccoli professor of oncology and deputy director of Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins University. She elucidated the complex interactions between T-cell subsets and cancer, and translated findings into two generations of vaccine platforms to develop pancreatic cancer antigen and biomarker discovery approaches.

Ernst Robert Lengyel, MD, PhD, Arthur L. and Lee G. Herbst professor of obstetrics and gynecology and chair of the department of obstetrics and gynecology at University of Chicago, for his leadership on the biology of ovarian cancer and research that has advanced knowledge of signaling in the tumor microenvironment.

Scott W. Lowe, PhD, investigator with Howard Hughes Medical Institute and chair of the cancer biology and genetics program at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, for leading the characterization of tumor suppressor gene networks and their involvement in carcinogenesis, therapeutic resistance and cellular senescence.

Elaine R. Mardis, PhD, FAACR, Steve and Cindy Rasmussen Nationwide Foundation endowed chair in genomic medicine and co-executive director of Institute for Genomic Medicine at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, and professor of pediatrics at The Ohio State University College of Medicine, for developing sequencing technology for the Human Genome Project and identifying cancer mutations targeted by small molecule inhibitors.

Andre Nussenzweig, PhD, chief of Laboratory of Genome Integrity at NCI, for seminal discoveries that speak to how cells maintain their own genome stability, allow chromosome fragility, and license leukemogenesis at the hands of aberrant DNA repair.

Julie Parsonnet, MD, professor of medicine (infectious diseases) and professor of epidemiology and population health at Stanford University School of Medicine, for elucidating how infectious agents cause chronic disease and research on H. pylori’s roles in malignancy and in modulating host immunity that are widely cited in the field of gastric cancer.

Anil K. Rustgi, MD, Irving professor of medicine and director of Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center, and associate dean of oncology at Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons at Columbia University, for illuminating the importance of gastrointestinal cancer genomics and genetics and demonstrating that p120-catenin is a tumor suppressor gene in cancers.

Mehmet Toner, PhD, Helen Andrus Benedict professor at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, for creating microfluidic devices with “real life” clinical applications in cancer diagnosis, prenatal diagnosis, regenerative medicine and tissue engineering.

John Eu-Li Wong, MBBS, Isabel Chan professor in medical sciences and senior vice president for health affairs at National University of Singapore, for innovation in health care delivery, administration, policy and public health, and achievements in advancing cancer medicine in Singapore.


Catherine J. Wu, MD, professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School and chief of the division of stem cell transplantation and cellular therapies at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, for pioneering the design and implementation of personalized genomics-guided cancer immunotherapy that focused on vaccination strategies to address the challenges of cancer heterogeneity and evolution.

Richard Allen Young, PhD, professor at Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research and professor in the department of biology at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, for fundamental insights into gene control in human health and disease, invention of widely used new technologies, and the development of novel therapeutics for cancer.