On Oct. 15, four alumni of the Harvard-MIT Program in Health Sciences and Technology were elected to the National Academy of Medicine (NAM), each securing one of the highest honors in the fields of health and medicine. Benjamin Ebert, Jennifer Elisseeff, Matthew Meyerson, and Janey Wiggs were among 85 newly elected members recognized for their “outstanding professional achievement and commitment to service in science, medicine, health, and policy in the U.S. and around the globe,” according to the NAM. Ebert, Meyerson, and Wiggs are HST MD alumni, while Elisseeff is a graduate of HST’s MEMP PhD program.
The NAM was founded in 1970 as the Institute of Medicine, and is one of three academies comprising the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. The organization is a nonprofit providing objective guidance on the topics of health, science, and technology. More than 2,000 members strong, it has distinguished itself as a reliable source for credible advice on topics related to human health, and aims to secure a healthy future for all.
Details regarding the alumni’s individual recognitions are as follows:
Benjamin Ebert, M.D., Ph.D., chair of medical oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute; and George P. Canellos MD and Jean Y. Canellos Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Boston was recognized for contributions to understanding the genetics and biology of myeloid malignancies, to the characterization of clonal hematopoiesis, and to elucidating the mechanism of action of thalidomide and its analogs.
Jennifer Elisseeff, Ph.D., Morton Goldberg Professor, department of biomedical engineering and ophthalmology, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, was recognized for significant achievements in regenerative medicine therapies and contributions to regenerative immunology.
Matthew Meyerson, M.D., Ph.D., professor of pathology, Harvard Medical School, Dana- Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, was recognized for discovery of EGFR mutations in lung cancer and their ability to predict responsiveness to EGFR inhibitors, thereby helping to establish the current paradigm of precision cancer therapy.
Janey Wiggs, M.D., Ph.D., Paul Austin Chandler Professor of Ophthalmology, vice chair for clinical research in ophthalmology, Harvard Medical School; associate chief, ophthalmology, Massachusetts Eye and Ear; and associate member, Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, Boston, was recognized for research and achievements in the field of ocular genetics, including the discovery of multiple genetic and environmental risk factors for glaucoma, and for developing and implementing genetic testing for inherited eye disease.