January 9, 2009

Brown named chief of Clinical Pharmacology

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Nancy J. Brown, M.D.

Brown named chief of Clinical Pharmacology

Nancy J. Brown, M.D., associate dean for Clinical and Translational Scientist Development, has been named chief of the Division of Clinical Pharmacology.

“With new leadership now identified, the division is in superb position to move forward as one of the outstanding clinical pharmacology programs in the country,” said Eric Neilson, M.D., chair of the Department of Medicine.

Brown becomes the fifth director of the division — one of 13 divisions in the Department of Medicine — joining what Neilson called “a distinguished group of former leaders in clinical pharmacology at Vanderbilt.” The division was founded in 1963 by John Oates, M.D.

“I am grateful to Eric Neilson for this opportunity and for his support of the Division of Clinical Pharmacology,” Brown said. “It is an honor and, at the same time, daunting to follow in the footsteps of Jason Morrow, Dan Roden, Garrett FitzGerald and John Oates.

“The division is unparalleled as an environment where investigators conduct high-impact translational science,” she said. “By understanding how medications act and interact, and why they act differently in different people, we are poised to impact on health by promoting personalized medicine.”

“I have no doubt, with Dr. Brown's leadership, that the Division of Clinical Pharmacology will make significant progress toward enhancing interdisciplinary scientific relationships and expanding our research portfolio,” Neilson said.

Brown earned her A.B. degree in Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry from Yale University and her M.D. with honors from Harvard University. She completed medicine and clinical pharmacology training at Vanderbilt, where she was the Hugh J. Morgan Chief Resident in 1992.

Among her many honors and awards, Brown counts the American Society of Hypertension Young Scholar Award, the American Federation for Medical Research Outstanding Investigator Award, and the Grant W. Liddle Award for outstanding contributions in clinical research and Elaine Sanders-Bush Award for mentoring, both from Vanderbilt. She was elected to the American Society for Clinical Investigation in 2003 and the Association of American Physicians in 2008.

Brown is an associate editor for the journal Hypertension and has served on numerous program committees, review panels and study sections for the National Institutes of Health, the American Society of Hypertension, and Association of American Medical Colleges.

As a specialist in vascular biology and hypertension, Brown has focused on the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system, one of the body's blood pressure-regulating systems. Her discoveries have had major implications for the treatment of cardiovascular disease.