Physician-scientist Dr. Mukesh K. Jain appointed dean of medicine and biological sciences at Brown

A cardiovascular specialist and health care leader at University Hospitals and Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Dr. Jain will lead biomedical research and education, and serve as Warren Alpert Medical School dean.

Dr. Mukesh K. Jain, an accomplished academic and health care leader and a physician-scientist who specializes in cardiovascular medicine, has been appointed dean of medicine and biological sciences at Brown University.

Jain serves currently as chief academic officer at University Hospitals health system in Cleveland and vice dean for medical sciences at Case Western Reserve University. In joining Brown, he will lead the Division of Biology and Medicine, which encompasses the Warren Alpert Medical School, four biological science departments, 14 clinical departments and two hybrid departments. He will also manage the medical school’s relationships with nine affiliated hospitals.

Brown President Christina H. Paxson said Jain’s experience leading university-hospital partnerships in a first-rate health care system positions him for success at a moment when Brown, Lifespan and Care New England — Rhode Island’s two largest health care systems — are working to create an integrated academic health system.

“As we work both at Brown and with our affiliates toward improved health for all Rhode Islanders, we sought a leader with a clear and compelling vision for scientific discovery, excellence in biomedical education and world-class clinical care,” Paxson said. “Mukesh Jain brings those attributes and more. He has the track record, skills and innovative approach to take academic medicine at Brown to the next level of excellence, and I look forward to years of collaborative partnership to come.”

In his new role, Jain will serve as the strategic and academic leader of biological sciences programs, biomedical research and medical education at Brown. Key responsibilities include supporting expansion of research activity across the Division of Biology and Medicine, with a vision to advance Brown’s position in the top tier of medical schools and basic science and clinical departments. Integral to his role will be sustaining a culture of ongoing engagement with learners at every level, and promoting and enhancing diversity, equity and inclusion among all members of the community in the execution of education, research and clinical care missions.

Paxson and Brown Provost Richard M. Locke, to whom Jain will report jointly, announced his appointment in a Wednesday, Oct. 20, email to the Brown University community.

“Mukesh Jain is superbly qualified to serve as Brown’s next dean of medicine and biological sciences,” Locke said. “He has demonstrated success in collaborating with hospital partners, supporting translational research and building relationships with communities. He’s an accomplished scholar, educator and innovator, and members of the search committee were impressed by the manner in which he combines outstanding clinical expertise with a deep appreciation of the role of basic science in advancing biomedical research.”

In his joint roles at University Hospitals and Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, where he has held multiple appointments since 2006, Jain developed strategies, priorities and programs to enhance biomedical research efforts across the health system and medical school. He oversees basic and clinical research, a portfolio of programs with nearly $177 million in annual research funding and more than 200 full-time staff, and one of the nation’s largest graduate medical education programs, with over 1,100 residents and fellows.

Jain said that a range of factors piqued his interest in Brown, including the Warren Alpert Medical School’s reputation for outstanding contributions to science and medicine and track record in training top physicians. He’s eager to partner with faculty at Brown’s School of Public Health and Carney Institute for Brain Science as well as colleagues at other schools, institutes and departments on campus. And the potential for greater integration in medical care, research and education in Rhode Island also played a significant role in his decision.

“I hope to leverage my experiences in building robust basic and translational research programs that are aligned and integrated with excellence in clinical care to help the Warren Alpert Medical School and its clinical affiliates achieve even greater impact in advancing standard of care to improve human health,” he said. “And across all biomedical programs, I will work to ensure that Brown is recruiting and retaining the best and brightest from all backgrounds and is at the tip of the national spear in cultivating the next generation of physicians and scientists.”

Increasing the representation of students and faculty from groups historically underrepresented in medicine and science will be a key priority for the dean, along with advancing efforts to ensure that medical school graduates deliver care to patients with a full understanding of social determinants of health and commitment to improving upon existing inequities in health care.

In addition to his leadership roles in Cleveland, Jain is a biomedical researcher internationally recognized for studies that established a central role for a family of genetic factors in cardiovascular biology, innate immunity and metabolism. He is the founding director of Case Western Reserve’s Cardiovascular Research Institute, which established a robust cardiovascular research program that spanned basic and clinical research, secured over $60 million in research funding and is home to nearly 120 clinical trials involving 2,500 patients.

He has a long track record of training early-career researchers and is the recipient of mentoring awards from both Harvard Medical School and University Hospitals / Case Western Reserve. Earlier this year, he received the Distinguished University Professor Award, the highest honor that Case Western bestows upon a member of its professoriate.

Since 2012, Jain has served as the chief scientific officer at the Harrington Discovery Institute, which supports breakthrough biomedical research. During his tenure, the institute has provided more than $6 million annually to scholars across North America and the United Kingdom, as well as support to physician-scientists in the Cleveland community. In 2019, he was appointed a visiting professor at the University of Oxford in the U.K.

Among the important priorities Jain will bring to Brown is advancing the medical school’s commitment to training physician-scientists — doctors who treat patients clinically and engage also in biomedical research. The Warren Alpert Medical School is home to a thriving M.D./Ph.D. program, which Jain said is a hallmark for any world-class medical school with a commitment to translational science.

“Physician-scientists have been a driving force in biomedical research and have made broad contributions in both the private and public sectors,” he noted. “If there was ever a demonstration of the importance of the roles they play, the COVID-19 pandemic has truly brought this to the forefront. But sadly, the number of physicians engaged in research has dwindled nationally. It’s up to medical schools and health systems to work together and with other partners to address that challenge, given the tremendous implications for human health.”

Nationally, Jain’s clinical and academic contributions have been recognized through numerous honors including election to the National Academy of Medicine, the American Society for Clinical Investigation — an organization for which he is a past president— the Association of American Physicians, and the Association of University Cardiologists. In 2017, Jain and five colleagues (including two Nobel laureates) founded the Physician-Scientist Support Foundation, a nonprofit that strives to build a sustainable and diverse physician-scientist workforce through financial and research support for fundamental discoveries that improve human health.

Jain earned a bachelor’s degree in biochemistry from the University of Buffalo and his M.D. from the University of Buffalo School of Medicine. After finishing his residency in internal medicine at the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, he completed fellowships in research and cardiovascular disease at Harvard School of Public Health and Brigham and Women’s Hospital.

Jain’s appointment follows a comprehensive search process led by a committee that included faculty, staff and administrators as well as student representatives from the Warren Alpert Medical School and Brown’s Graduate School. He will begin as dean effective March 1, 2022, serving as a member of the Provost’s Senior Academic Deans committee and of the President’s Cabinet.

Jain will succeed Dr. Jack A. Elias, Brown’s dean of medicine and biological sciences for eight years, who is transitioning to the role of senior advisor for health affairs and working with University leadership to advance the development of Brown’s relationships with Lifespan and Care New England as efforts toward an integrated academic health system continue.

 

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