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Beckman to direct newly formed Section of Vascular Medicine

Sep. 10, 2015, 9:26 AM

Joshua Beckman, M.D., MSc., previously a faculty member at Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women’s Hospital, has been named director of Vanderbilt’s newly formed Section of Vascular Medicine within the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine.

Joshua Beckman, M.D., MSc.

Beckman is a translational researcher whose work focuses on how diabetes causes vascular disease, specifically the mechanisms that cause endothelial dysfunction and susceptibility to atherosclerosis.

His research program includes ongoing investigations that seek to understand how various forms of insulin resistance impact endothelial cell signaling and vasomotor function, whether atherosclerosis causes insulin resistance and vascular dysfunction, and how oxidative stress impacts upon cardiac, vascular and renal function.

“Dr. Beckman is a national leader in vascular medicine, and I am thrilled that he is joining us. Under his direction, Vanderbilt will have one of the leading vascular medicine programs in the country,” said Thomas Wang, M.D., director of the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine and physician-in-chief of the Vanderbilt Heart and Vascular Institute (VHVI).

At Vanderbilt, Beckman will create a section of vascular medicine that provides the non-surgical care for patients with a range of conditions including peripheral artery disease, venous thromboembolism, vasculitis, hypertension and aortic disease.

“I believed that Vanderbilt had developed an infrastructure ripe for a program to be initiated and organized. There are many important pieces of the puzzle here already, and the institution has committed to a superior cardiovascular program, so I saw a wonderful opportunity to try and bring some new expertise to the incredible group of people now around me,” Beckman said.

Praising Vanderbilt’s collaborative culture, he said he envisions the vascular medicine and vascular surgery divisions working together in much the same way as cardiology and cardiac surgery.

“I think patients get the best care when you provide a team approach to complex problems. I think that working with vascular surgery will be an incredibly important component, but not the only one. I also want to work closely with the primary care, diabetes and oncology communities.”

Beckman earned his medical degree at New York University and his MS degree in Epidemiology from the Harvard School of Public Health.

Following an internship, residency and fellowship at Presbyterian Hospital in New York, he completed a fellowship in vascular medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, where he served as director of the cardiovascular fellowship program from 2006-2013.

Beckman, who was an associate professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School prior to coming to Vanderbilt, has received numerous teaching accolates including the W. Proctor Harvey M.D., Young Teacher Award and the Eugene Braunwald Teaching Award.

“Vascular medicine has become my calling, and the most gratifying thing I can do is find someone else for whom the field creates a spark. I enjoy teaching patients and clinicians at all levels in a way that conveys information such that you can suddenly see the recognition in their eyes. I feel like I have accomplished my mission when I can help them organize the way they consider difficult vascular topics,” Beckman said.

“I like the educational enterprise because no matter how long I work, one day I will stop and rely on others to advance the specialty. I will pay back those who have taught me by making sure the field lives on and moves forward in the right way.”

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