Tony Wynshaw-Boris, MD, PhD, Named Chair of Genetics and Genome Sciences at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine and University Hospitals Case Medical Center

CLEVELAND – July 1, 2013 – Culminating an extensive national search, Tony Wynshaw-Boris MD, PhD, accomplished researcher and expert in genetics, genomics and neurologic disorders, has been named chair of the Department of Genetics and Genome Sciences at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine and University Hospitals (UH) Case Medical Center. Wynshaw-Boris’s appointment will become official with final approval from the Case Western Reserve Board of Trustees.

Highly accomplished as both a clinician and a scientist, Wynshaw-Boris’s research centers on how neurogenetic disorders evolve during early human development. Recent research has concentrated on autism and developing a further understanding of the pathophysiological mechanisms that result in the highly inheritable disorder.

“Tony is someone with whom both [UH Case Medical Center President] Fred Rothstein and I have had the pleasure to work with during his initial stints at Case Western Reserve and University Hospitals,” said Pamela Davis, MD, PhD, dean of Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine. “Our firsthand knowledge of his work makes us all the more excited to have him back in Cleveland, but it is his extraordinary accomplishments since then that represent the greatest reason to recruit him.”

Last year, Wynshaw-Boris was elected as a fellow to the American Association for the Advancement of Sciences. He has also been elected to the American Pediatric Society, the Association of American Physicians and the American Society of Clinical Investigation. He was included in Discover magazine’s Top 100 Science Stories regarding the social behavior of mutant mice, received the National Institutes of Health Director’s Award, and won a special achievement award from the National Human Genome Research Institute.

Since 2008, the Cleveland native has served as the Charles J. Epstein Professor of Human Genetics and Pediatrics at the School of Medicine of the University of California at San Francisco as well as Chief of the Division of Genetics in the UCSF Department of Pediatrics. For the preceding eight years, he was at the School of Medicine at the University of California, San Diego and Rady Children’s Hospital San Diego. Dr. Wynshaw-Boris serves as the executive editor of the journal Human Molecular Genetics.

“Tony embodies the mission of our academic medical center – an innovative researcher, a dedicated educator, and an outstanding physician,” says Fred C. Rothstein, MD, President of UH Case Medical Center. “He is an internationally known leader in his field and as Chairman he will further enhance our Department of Genetics and Genome Sciences.”

The appointment allows Wynshaw-Boris to expand his research beyond his lab. He sees the Department of Genetics and Genome Sciences as an area of study that can advance projects across the university and hospital - ultimately benefitting patients. He also believes scientific and technological advancements make unprecedented breakthroughs possible; the challenge is to engage colleagues across disciplines and skill sets in complementary ways.

 “I do think genetics and genomics are the organizing principle for all medicine and all of biology, so we should be the center of what’s going on in the School of Medicine and in the hospital,” Wynshaw-Boris said. “I’m going to do all that I can to make sure that that happens, building on what we have now.”

Wynshaw-Boris earned his medical degree and doctorate in biochemistry from Case Western Reserve. He completed a residency at Rainbow Babies & Children's Hospital and a fellowship at Children's Hospital of Boston and Harvard University. He also completed a prestigious Howard Hughes Medical Institute postdoctoral fellowship, where he studied mouse models of birth defects and developmental disorders.

Among the nation’s leading academic medical centers, University Hospitals Case Medical Center is the primary affiliate of Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, a nationally recognized leader in medical research and education.

Founded in 1843, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine is the largest medical research institution in Ohio and is among the nation's top medical schools for research funding from the National Institutes of Health. The School of Medicine is recognized throughout the international medical community for outstanding achievements in teaching. The School's innovative and pioneering Western Reserve2 curriculum interweaves four themes--research and scholarship, clinical mastery, leadership, and civic professionalism--to prepare students for the practice of evidence-based medicine in the rapidly changing health care environment of the 21st century. Nine Nobel Laureates have been affiliated with the School of Medicine.

Annually, the School of Medicine trains more than 800 MD and MD/PhD students and ranks in the top 25 among U.S. research-oriented medical schools as designated by U.S. News & World Report's "Guide to Graduate Education."

The School of Medicine is affiliated with University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center, MetroHealth Medical Center, the Louis Stokes Cleveland Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center, and the Cleveland Clinic, with which it established the Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine of Case Western Reserve University in 2002.