Five U-M faculty members elected to National Academy of Medicine
Five University of Michigan professors have been chosen as new members of the National Academy of Medicine, the highest honorary society in the country for researchers in the fields of health and medicine.
Katherine Gallagher, Michele Heisler, Sachin Kheterpal, Anna Suk-Fong Lok and Bhramar Mukherjee have been recognized for their contributions to a broad range of topics, including cardiovascular disease, epidemiology, hepatology, health inequities, and anesthesiology informatics and clinical research.
Gallagher is the John R. Pfeifer Professor of Vascular Surgery, professor of surgery and professor of microbiology and immunology. She has been elected to the NAM for her innovative translational research on epigenetic regulation of immune cells during normal and pathologic tissue repair and other cardiovascular disease processes.
Gallagher is an expert in the molecular pathogenesis of wound repair and has contributed substantially to the understanding of epigenetics in immune cells associated with tissue repair, cardiovascular diseases, sepsis and most recently, COVID-19.
She is a member of the American Society of Clinical Investigation, American Surgical Association and Society of Clinical Surgery, a James IV International Scholar, a Distinguished Fellow of the Society of Vascular Surgery and a Taubman Scholar. She received the 2022 MICHR Basic/Translational mentor of the year award and is currently chair of the Bioengineering, Technology, and Surgical Sciences NIH-study section and an original member of the NIH-National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases Wound Consortium.
Heisler is a professor of internal medicine at the Medical School, professor of health behavior and health education at the School of Public Health, research investigator at the VA Ann Arbor Healthcare System, and medical director of the nonprofit health and human rights organization Physicians for Human Rights. She also is associate director of Global REACH and research investigator at the VA Center for Clinical Management Research.
A drive to understand and address inequity in medical care and health outcomes, both within the United States and in low- and middle-income countries, has powered Heisler’s career. For more than two decades, she has developed, evaluated and implemented innovative programs in safety net health systems to extend support beyond face-to-face clinic visits and address behavioral and social determinants of health.
Her clinical trials and implementation studies have demonstrated the effectiveness of diverse peer support models to achieve sustained improvements in health and social well-being. She has also gained international recognition for her research documenting health consequences of human rights violations and her work conducting rigorous medico-legal evaluations to document, prosecute and prevent torture, violence, and discrimination against marginalized groups.
Kheterpal, the Kevin K. Tremper Research Professor in the Department of Anesthesiology and associate dean for research information technology at the Medical School, was elected to the NAM in recognition of his vision for and international leadership in anesthesiology informatics and clinical research.
His career has focused on the use of novel information technology and electronic health records (EHR) for patient care, quality improvement and research. Prior to his academic medicine career, he was the lead architect for a commercially available acute care electronic health record used by hospitals across the U.S.
Using innovative techniques to integrate administrative, EHR and registry data across institutions, he established the Multicenter Perioperative Outcomes Group and serves as its principal investigator. His leadership of MPOG has transformed the field through international epidemiologic studies, national personalized quality improvement implementation, pragmatic clinical trials and data science.
In addition, his team’s recent work has focused on clarifying the role of mobile health and wearable technology in enabling more patient-centered research.
Lok is the Dame Sheila Sherlock Distinguished University Professor of Hepatology and Internal Medicine and the Alice Lohrman Andrews Research Professor of Hepatology, director of the clinical hepatology program and assistant dean for clinical research. She is currently president of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases.
Lok was inducted to the NAM for conducting the first systematic study on hepatitis B reactivation among patients receiving chemotherapy. She was a key investigator in interferon and nucleos/tide analogue trials leading to their approval for hepatitis B and is considered one of the most outstanding clinical investigators in the study of hepatitis B, or HBV, and has contributed to all major HBV-related issues, including epidemiology, prevention and treatment.
She also has made crucial contributions to hepatitis C research and led the first study to demonstrate that it is possible to cure hepatitis C with interferon-free regimens using a combination of direct-acting antiviral agents.
Lok won the American Gastroenterological Association Distinguished Mentor Award in 2022 and also has received the AGA William Beaumont Prize in Gastroenterology and the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases Distinguished Service Award.
Bhramar Mukherjee is the John D. Kalbfleisch Collegiate Professor of Biostatistics and professor of epidemiology and global public health at the School of Public Health. Her research focuses on the development and application of statistical methods in epidemiology, environmental health, cancer research and disease risk assessment.
She is known for her pioneering contributions in developing analytical frameworks for integrating data from genes, environment and past disease phenotypes toward improved understanding of disease etiology and future risk, often using observational data sources like electronic health records. Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, Mukherjee and her team have been modeling the SARS-CoV-2 virus trajectory in India and their work has been covered widely by national and international media.
Mukherjee also is a research professor at the Michigan Institute of Data Science, serves as the associate director for quantitative data sciences at the U-M Rogel Cancer Center and has had a longstanding collaboration with U-M’s Precision Health Initiative.
She also has led a flagship undergraduate summer program in Big Data since 2015 and is a fellow of the American Statistical Association and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.