We are pleased to inform you of exciting changes coming to our basic science departments. As Eric J. Nestler, MD, PhD moves forward in his role as Dean for Academic and Scientific Affairs at ISMMS, he will retain his position as Director of the Friedman Brain Institute but will step down from the chairmanship of the Department of Neuroscience. This transition has created an opportunity to realign several departments in ways that will foster enduring strength and growth for the ISMMS basic science enterprise, specifically in the following areas:
The Fishberg Department of Neuroscience –
Paul Kenny, PhD, the Ward-Coleman Chair in Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics, will leave his current position as Chair of the Department of Pharmacology and Systems Therapeutics to become Chair of Neuroscience. As a world-renowned investigator in the neurobiology of obesity and drug addiction, Dr. Kenny’s expertise is an ideal fit with his new department.
His multidisciplinary studies use behavioral paradigms, physiological and circuit analyses, and molecular characterization of neurobehavioral disorders to uncover new signaling cascades that may play a role in addiction-like behaviors. Since his recruitment to ISMMS in 2014 from The Scripps Research Institute in Florida, Dr. Kenny has continued to build on his compelling scientific vision and strong administrative skills, and will be a true asset to the Department of Neuroscience. Dr. Kenny will continue to serve as Director of the Mount Sinai Experimental Therapeutics Institute.
Dorothy H. and Lewis Rosenstiel Department of Pharmacologyand Systems Therapeutics and Department of Structural andChemical Biology – These departments, which have considerable overlap of scientific interest and direction, will be combined into a single entity under the leadership of Ming-Ming Zhou, PhD. Dr. Zhou, who holds the Dr. Harold and Golden Lamport Professorship in Physiology and Biophysics, has been Chair of the Department of Structural and Chemical Biology since 2004, and a member of the ISMMS faculty since 1997.
He is an internationally-recognized structural biologist whose studies of the fundamental molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying signal transduction and regulation of gene transcription and translation have direct and important implications for understanding the molecular basis of human diseases such as cancer, HIV/AIDS and Alzheimer’s disease. Uniting the expertise of Dr. Zhou and the Structural and Chemical Biology faculty with the programs and goals of the Department of Pharmacology and Systems Therapeutics presents an extraordinary opportunity to capitalize on scientific synergies. The newly combined department, named the Department of Pharmacological Sciences, reflects the scope of interests and programs represented. Dr. Zhou will also serve as Co-Director of the Mount Sinai Experimental Therapeutics Institute.
These changes will begin to be implemented immediately and will be fully effective by July 1, 2016. We look forward to seeing many successful and innovative collaborations emerge from this restructuring.