October 10, 2006

CONTACT: Karen Kreeger
(215) 349-5658

Three Penn School of Medicine Faculty Named to Institute of Medicine

(Philadelphia, PA) - Three professors at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine were elected yesterday as members of the Institute of Medicine (IOM), one of the nation’s highest honors in biomedicine. The new members bring Penn’s total to 58, out of over 1500 worldwide. Overall, 65 new members were named this year.

“Penn is privileged and proud that three of our most distinguished and capable physician-scientists have been named to one of America’s premier institutions,” says Dr. Arthur H. Rubenstein, Executive Vice President of the University of Pennsylvania for the Health System and Dean of the School of Medicine.

The new Penn IOM members are:

  • Lance B. Becker, MD, Professor of Emergency Medicine,
  • Francisco González-Scarano, MD, Professor and Chair of the Department of Neurology, and,
  • Mitchell A. Lazar, MD, PhD, Sylvan H. Eisman Professor of Medicine; Professor of Genetics; and Chief, Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Metabolism; and Director, Institute for Diabetes, Obesity, and Metabolism.

Dr. Becker is newly recruited from the University of Chicago where he was the founder and Director of the Emergency Resuscitation Center at the University of Chicago and Argonne National Laboratory. He comes to Penn to establish a new interdisciplinary research program in resuscitation science to treat sudden death from cardiac arrest and trauma. He is developing a diverse team of scientists, clinicians, and engineers focused on understanding the basic science of ischemia/reperfusion; translating basic science into understanding the human determinants of life and death; engineering new life-saving devices; and making new discoveries for extending the window of successful resuscitation.

In addition to his position as chair of Neurology, Dr. González-Scarano has held many leadership positions at PENN Medicine, including his current appointment as co-Director of the Penn Center for AIDS Research and co-Director of the University of Pennsylvania Comprehensive Neuroscience Center. He is also a member of the National Advisory Neurological Disorders and Stroke Council (2004-2008). Dr. González-Scarano's basic research and clinical practice focuses on inflammatory conditions, including multiple sclerosis, encephalitis, and AIDS.

Dr. Lazar is a Professor of and the Sylvan Eisman Endowed Chair in Medicine. He was appointed Chief of the Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Metabolism at Penn in 1996, and in 2005 he became the first director of the newly created Institute for Diabetes, Obesity, and Metabolism. Dr. Lazar has pioneered studies on the role of fat-cell nuclear receptors in obesity and diabetes and discovered a novel hormone called resistin, which plays a critical role in glucose metabolism. He serves on the Editorial Boards of multiple journals, including Science and Genes & Development, and is a member of the Board of Scientific Councilors of the National Institute of Diabetes, Digestive, and Kidney Diseases. Dr. Lazar has received many honors, most recently the 2006 Edwin B. Astwood Award from The Endocrine Society.

The Institute of Medicine was established in 1970 by the National Academy of Sciences to honor professional achievement in the health sciences and to serve as a national resource for independent analysis and recommendations on issues related to medicine, biomedical sciences, and health.


PENN Medicine is a $2.9 billion enterprise dedicated to the related missions of medical education, biomedical research, and high-quality patient care. PENN Medicine consists of the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine (founded in 1765 as the nation's first medical school) and the University of Pennsylvania Health System.

Penn's School of Medicine is ranked #2 in the nation for receipt of NIH research funds; and ranked #3 in the nation in U.S. News & World Report's most recent ranking of top research-oriented medical schools. Supporting 1,400 fulltime faculty and 700 students, the School of Medicine is recognized worldwide for its superior education and training of the next generation of physician-scientists and leaders of academic medicine.

The University of Pennsylvania Health System includes three hospitals, all of which have received numerous national patient-care honors [Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania; Pennsylvania Hospital, the nation's first hospital; and Penn Presbyterian Medical Center]; a faculty practice plan; a primary-care provider network; two multispecialty satellite facilities; and home care and hospice.

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