Newswise — LOS ANGELES (June 6, 2024) — Shlomo Melmed, MB, ChB, executive vice president of Medicine and Health Sciences and dean of the Medical Faculty at Cedars-Sinai, has received the Pituitary Society’s top honor for his four decades of pioneering achievements and leadership in the field of endocrinology.

Melmed received the inaugural Outstanding Pituitary Society Leadership Award on June 2 during the Pituitary Society Biennial Membership Forum, which took place concurrently with the Endocrine Society 2024 medical conference in Boston. A groundbreaking investigator and leader in the pituitary field for more than 40 years, Melmed has been a leader in both research and education for The Pituitary Society, and he founded its flagship journal, Pituitary.

“Dr. Melmed, through his passion and intellect, has been a leader in developing novel therapeutics, innovative research fields, and educational paradigms for endocrinologists and neurosurgeons internationally,” said Larry Katznelson, MD, vice dean of Medical Education at Cedars-Sinai and current president of The Pituitary Society. “He has mentored scores of researchers and clinicians who are leaders in neuroendocrinology internationally, and we are honored to highlight his many research and education achievements with this first-ever award.”

Melmed, distinguished professor of Medicine, has led the discovery and application of novel treatments for endocrine tumors through his National Institutes of Health-funded laboratory. He has led pivotal global clinical trials and been involved in more than 400 research studies published in high-impact journals.

The Melmed Laboratory focuses on integrating basic science discovery with prospective studies of patients who have pituitary tumors. Many of the more than 90 pre- and post-doctoral scientists who trained with Melmed now hold endocrinology leadership positions in major healthcare organizations around the world.

“Dr. Melmed’s mentorship taught me that my goals were indeed possible, and that my dedication and passion for research could drive my career,” said Maria Chiara Zatelli, MD, PhD, professor of Endocrinology at the University of Ferrara in Italy, who spoke about her experience being mentored by Melmed during the awards ceremony. She trained as a research fellow in Melmed’s laboratory for two years, beginning in 1998. “After my fellowship, he continued to mentor me from a distance, helping me further advance my scientific and academic career.”

Another former mentee, Yona Greenman, MD, now chair of the Institute of Endocrinology, Diabetes, Metabolism and Hypertension at Tel Aviv Sourasky Medical Center in Israel, spent three years as a research fellow in Melmed’s laboratory during the mid-1990s. Under his guidance, Greenman says, she developed skills in basic research and in the field of pituitary disorders that helped spur her career. 

“As a mentee, I learned the importance of original and critical thinking, scientific curiosity, integrity and perseverance,” said Greenman, who is also a professor of the Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences at Tel Aviv University. “Dr. Melmed inspires through personal example. Now, as a mentor myself, I regularly reflect on his caring and the responsibility he assumes for his mentees, and I make every effort to apply this lesson to my own fellows and students.”

Melmed has been a faculty leader at Cedars-Sinai for more than 40 years and has been the health system’s chief academic leader since 1998.

He is an elected member of the Association of American Physicians, the American Society of Clinical Investigation and the Endocrine Society Council. He served as president of the International Society of Endocrinology, president and founding member of the Pituitary Society, and is a member of the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine’s Independent Citizens’ Oversight Committee.

He earned a bachelor of medicine and bachelor of surgery (MB, ChB) with distinction from the University of Cape Town, South Africa. He is a diplomate of the American Board of Internal Medicine, certified in endocrinology and metabolism.

“I was truly humbled and surprised to receive this honor from my peers worldwide and was most proud that so many of my former trainees were present at the ceremony,” Melmed said. “None of our achievements are derived in a vacuum, and I am grateful to my family, fellows, professional colleagues and Cedars-Sinai for decades of inspiring support.”

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