SOM Dean's Letter

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January 2019

Vikas P. Sukhatme, MD, ScD

Students, staff and faculty,
Please join me on March 5 as I present a State of the School address at 5 p.m. in the WHSCAB Auditorium. We will celebrate outstanding accomplishments from the past year and discuss what we hope to accomplish in the year ahead. The presentation will be live-streamed for those who cannot attend in person. A reception in the WHSCAB lobby will follow the presentation. I hope to see you there.

What Does Your Mentor Mean to You?

In an academic health center, we celebrate and value mentorship at every level. Whether you’re a faculty member, staff member, learner, or alum—if you have a mentor, join us in celebrating them on January 31, national #thankyourmentorday.

Be sure to post a picture of yourself with your mentor and tell us – in 280 or fewer characters – why your mentor deserves to be celebrated. Whether you use Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn or Instagram,  tag the Emory School of Medicine, and include both hashtags: #thankyourmentorday #emorymedmentors

New Year, New Site

We are pleased to announce that the School of Medicine website has been redesigned, revealing a fresh face and improved functionality: 

More than just a new look, the site is now mobile-responsive, with a user-driven navigation based on more than a year's worth of insights gained from research and testing.

If you have trouble finding something, a good place to start is the new Directory link (top right on every page).

In the coming months, we look forward to rolling out additional intranet capabilities to support faculty and staff. In the meantime, we encourage you to take a look around, and send any feedback or errors to


Pharmacology Name Changes to Reflect Broadening Vision

On January 1, 2019, Emory’s Department of Pharmacology changed its name to the "Department of Pharmacology and Chemical Biology."

Pharmacology and Chemical Biology faculty have been discussing the planned name change with colleagues across the university since 2017. The change reflects a broadening of vision: from fundamental science of drugs to tools (chemical probes) targeted to disease-related proteins. Traditional pharmacology examines drugs’ mechanism of action, while chemical biology is oriented toward dissecting the machinery of life using chemical probes, says department chair Haian Fu.

"If we define pharmacology as the use of chemistry to modulate biology for medical purposes, then 'chemical biology' is a more general term, including the exploitation of the chemistry-biology interface to provide insights into biology’s most fundamental aspects," Fu says. Such insights will in turn help better our understanding of human diseases and make better medicines.

Pharmacology and Chemical Biology sees itself as an "interface department," connecting basic discovery and clinical advances, he says. The name change harmonizes with related initiatives, such as the recruitment of new faculty with envisioned interface roles, and cross-campus educational and therapeutic innovation activities.

Incorporating "Chemical biology" also has the support of chemistry faculty, and aligns the renamed department with the Departments of Chemistry and Biology within Emory College of Arts & Sciences.

Read more

Your Fantastic Mind: Premieres Tonight on GPB

Tune in tonight (or set your DVR) to explore the mysteries of the amazing human brain. The Brain Health Center’s new TV show partnership with Georgia Public Broadcasting, Your Fantastic Mind, premieres January 28 at 8 pm and highlights gripping cases of our patients and life-changing science, showing us how we can prevent disease and harness the power of our brains to live longer, more fulfilling lives.


Omer Kucuk (hematology/oncology and urology) received the 2018 TUBITAK (Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey) Science Award. The award was presented during an award ceremony at the Presidential Palace of Turkey.

Luella Klein, the first female chair of a department in the School of Medicine (Gynecology and Obstetrics) and the first female president of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, died on January 13. A memorial service will be open to all on February 9 at 11:00 in Glenn Memorial United Methodist Church, with a reception to follow. 

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