Carlos Bernal-Mizrachi, MD has been installed as the Philip E. and Carolyn E. Cryer Professor of Medicine at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. The installation ceremony and reception was held at the Farrell Learning and Teaching Center on Monday, November 13, 2017. The appointment was announced by Chancellor Mark S. Wrighton and David H. Perlmuter, MD, executive vice chancellor for medical affairs and dean of the School of Medicine.
Carlos Bernal-Mizrachi, MD, received his medical degree from Universidad del Valle School of Medicine, Cali-Colombia, in 1990. He followed this with internships and residencies in internal medicine at Universidad del Valle School of Medicine and at University of Miami, Jackson Memorial Hospital. In 1999, he came to Washington University for a fellowship in endocrinology, diabetes, and metabolism. He remained as an instructor in medicine in the Division of Endocrinology, Metabolism, and Lipid Research and rose through the ranks to become associate professor of medicine and of cell biology and physiology, director of the Diabetes Research Center Enrichment Program and Internal Advisory Board, and Chief of Endocrinology at Saint Louis VA Medical Center/John Cochran Division.
Dr. Bernal-Mizrachi’s lab uses multiple animal models, novel molecular biology techniques, and classic physiology to assess whether an alteration in the expression of genes related to glucocorticoid and vitamin D metabolism are responsible for the development of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Their findings in mice and in human innate immune cells have laid the groundwork for his active randomized controlled trials assessing the effects of vitamin D supplementation on blood pressure in type 2 diabetics and on subclinical markers of cardiovascular disease. Identifying these mechanisms may lead to the development of novel therapies for the treatment of diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
Dr. Bernal-Mizrachi’s work has led to more than 50 peer-reviewed publications, book chapters, and abstracts, and nearly as many invited lectureships worldwide. He has served on numerous grant review committees, including his permanent role on the National Institutes of Health’s Integrative Nutrition and Metabolic Processes study section. His editorial responsibilities span a vast number of publications, including Journal of the American Medical Association, Lancet, and Circulation. Among many awards received, he was named the Paula and David Kipnis Scholar for Research Achievements by Washington University School of Medicine in 2007 and member of the American Society of Clinical Investigation in 2012.
Beyond his work as a highly-respected physician-scientist, Dr. Bernal-Mizrachi makes an invaluable impact on those following in his footsteps. At the School of Medicine, he serves on the steering committee for the Endocrinology Fellowship Training Program. His many teaching responsibilities have included lecturer for the primary care and clinical endocrinology courses, and preceptor for practice of medicine sessions for second-year medical students, the endocrinology fellows clinic, and the Mentors in Medicine program. To date, he has mentored and trained 24 post-doctoral fellows and undergraduate researchers.
Dr. Bernal-Mizrachi is part of a family of academic physicians. His father, Raul Bernal, and his mother, Matilde Mizrachi, have dedicated their lives to training academic physicians in Cali, Colombia. Dr. Bernal-Mizrachi is married to Ana Maria Arbelaez, Interim Chief of Pediatric Endocrinology at St. Louis Children’s Hospital, and they have three children David, Daniel, and Isabella.
About Philip E. Cryer and Carolyn Havlin-Cryer
Philip E. Cryer, MD, came to St. Louis, Barnes Hospital, and Washington University School of Medicine in 1965. He was a house officer in medicine, a fellow in endocrinology and metabolism, and chief resident in medicine, and joined the faculty in 1971. He rose to the rank of professor of medicine in 1981 and served as the Irene E. and Michael M. Karl Professor of Endocrinology and Metabolism from 1985 until he became emeritus in 2014. He led the Washington University General Clinical Research Center (GCRC) for 33 years and was director of the Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Metabolism from 1985 to 2002.
His research, all in humans, centered on the mechanisms of the normal defenses against low blood sugar concentrations and how those mechanisms go wrong, and lead to hypoglycemia, in people with diabetes. That led to his novel concept of hypoglycemia-associated autonomic failure in diabetes. His research has been recognized by the Banting Medal for Scientific Achievement of the American Diabetes Association, the Claude Bernard Medal of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes, an honorary doctorate from the University of Copenhagen, and three decades of research grant support from the National Institutes of Health. He is an international authority on hypoglycemia in diabetes.
About the Wolffs
Alan and Edith Wolff owned Wolff Construction Co., a real-estate development, investment and management company. Alan Wolff founded the company in the 1940s and led it until his death in 1989. Edith Wolff then took up leadership as the company’s president until her death in 2008.
Over the course of more than 30 years, gifts from the Wolffs have supported many areas of research at the School of Medicine, including projects involving Alzheimer’s disease, heart transplantation, bacterial sepsis infection, dermatology, cell biology and critical care medicine. They have provided funding for 13 endowed professorships, seven distinguished endowed professorships and specific research funds in cancer and ophthalmology.