David H. Perlmutter, MD, executive vice chancellor for medical affairs and dean of Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, has been named chair-elect of the Medical Sciences Section of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). His three-year term began this month.
AAAS, the world’s largest general scientific society, is an international nonprofit dedicated to advancing science, engineering and innovation for the benefit of all. The organization has individual members in more than 91 countries.
Perlmutter is internationally recognized for his research on alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency (ATD), a genetic disorder in which accumulation of a misfolded protein can cause severe liver damage. His work has led to advances in the general understanding of how cells dispose of misfolded proteins that are otherwise toxic and cause cellular dysfunction. His research also has contributed to the development of novel drug strategies that stimulate the intracellular degradation of toxic proteins for treatment of ATD and may be useful in delaying age-dependent degenerative diseases.