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Wayne M. Yokoyama, MD

Wayne M. Yokoyama, MD, the Sam and Audrey Loew Levin Professor of Medicine, Pathology and Immunology and director of the Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP) at Washington University School of Medicine, the nation’s largest MSTP, is honored for his efforts to enhance the training of premier physician-scientists.

Yokoyama is considered by his peers to be both an extraordinary physician-scientist-educator and physician-scientist. Students and faculty acknowledge his passion and commitment to continuous improvement of medical and graduate education at Washington University. For MSTP students, Yokoyama leads by example and personal engagement. He is actively involved in curriculum development, mentoring and fostering camaraderie; he initiated weekly MSTP interactions that include scientific and case presentations, career guidance and social opportunities, and the annual “Ungraduation Party” at his home, where fourth-year students celebrate their continued development as physician-scientists. He meets individually with every MSTP student and, to date, has mentored nearly 500 students, including graduate students in his own laboratory.

As an investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, he is internationally recognized for advancing knowledge of how natural killer (NK) cells in the body’s immune system recognize and kill cancer or infected cells. He received numerous Distinguished Service Teaching Awards and the 2011 Carl and Gerty Cori Faculty Achievement Award. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Medicine.

Yokoyama earned his medical degree from the University of Hawaii and completed internal medicine and rheumatology clinical training at the University of Iowa Hospitals. He was a research fellow at Iowa and the National Institutes of Health (NIH). He was recruited to Washington University in 1995 as chief of the Rheumatology Division, a position he held until 2007 when he became MSTP director.

Published: 02/15/2016