Terence S. Dermody, M.D., has been named the new chair of the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and physician-in-chief and scientific director at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC.
Dr. Dermody will officially begin on June 1. He joins Children’s Hospital from Vanderbilt University, where he is the Dorothy Overall Wells Professor of Pediatrics, director of the Division of Pediatric Infectious Diseases, and director of the Medical Scientist Training Program at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine. He also is a professor of pathology, microbiology and immunology at Vanderbilt.
“Terry Dermody is a world renowned researcher, compassionate physician, visionary leader and just an all-around first class person,” said Christopher Gessner, president, Children’s Hospital. “We are thrilled that he will be joining our team as we continue to grow our clinical and research programs and make Children’s the place to be for pediatric physicians and physician scientists to launch and build their careers.”
Dr. Dermody is a virologist with interests in viral pathogenesis and vaccine development. He has focused mainly on reovirus, an important experimental model for studies of viral encephalitis in infants, and on chikungunya virus, an arthropod-borne virus that causes epidemics of febrile arthritis.
The work in Dr. Dermody’s lab has encompassed several inter-related themes including the structural basis of viral attachment and cell entry, mechanisms of genome replication and packaging, patterns of cell signaling and gene expression occurring in response to viral infection, mechanisms of virus-induced apoptosis and its significance in the viral life cycle, and the role of viral receptor distribution and utilization in disease pathology. Currently, the lab is developing viral vectors for oncolytic and vaccine applications.
“Dr. Dermody came highly recommended by leaders in our Department of Pediatrics,” noted Arthur S. Levine, M.D., senior vice chancellor for the health sciences and John and Gertrude Petersen Dean of Medicine, University of Pittsburgh. “His academic interests, which included running Vanderbilt’s M.D./Ph.D. training program, are unusually broad. An exceptional physician and scientist, he will be an asset to our faculty, residents and students.”
“I am honored to be able to join the team in Pittsburgh and be a part of this world-class pediatric facility dedicated to improving the lives of children,” said Dr. Dermody. “I am eager to begin and have the opportunity to work with the talented physicians and scientists at Children’s Hospital. I feel honored and humbled to have this opportunity."
Dr. Dermody succeeds David H. Perlmutter, M.D., who recently left Children’s to become executive vice chancellor for medical affairs and dean of medicine at Washington University in St. Louis.
Dr. Dermody received his bachelor’s degree from Cornell University in 1978, and his medical degree from Columbia University in 1982. He completed an internal medicine residency at Presbyterian Hospital in New York in 1985 and fellowships in infectious diseases and molecular virology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School in 1988.
He has authored or co-authored more than 200 articles, reviews and chapters about his research, which is supported by grants from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Lamb Foundation. He currently holds five NIH grants, and his research has been continually funded by the NIH since 1987.
He has been recognized for his research accomplishments with the Ernest W. Goodpasture Faculty Research Award, the Grant W. Liddle Award for Leadership in the Promotion of Scientific Research, and an NIH MERIT Award. He is a past president of the American Society for Virology, past chair of the AAMC GREAT Group M.D./Ph.D. Section Steering Committee, and current chair of the Virology Division of the International Union of Microbiological Societies.
For more information on Dr. Dermody and Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC, visit www.chp.edu.