Recent Appointments & Recognition

reprinted from Issue 17, Fall 2013 of Frontiers of Medicine (PDF)

Tung Nguyen, MD

Recent Appointments

Tung Nguyen, MD

Tung Nguyen, MD, was appointed as the first recipient of the Stephen J. McPhee, MD Endowed Chair in General Internal Medicine.

The chair was created through the generosity of more than 250 colleagues, friends, family and trainees of McPhee, a founding member of the Division of General Internal Medicine and a highly respected clinician, educator and researcher during his 31-year career at UCSF.

Nguyen conducts community-based participatory research, which involves minority communities as integral partners to reduce health disparities. His work has helped improve cancer prevention, particularly in Vietnamese and Chinese American populations. He also leads research on hepatitis B control among Asian Americans in Northern California. Nguyen is director of the Asian American Research Center on Health, co-leader of the Cancer Center’s Cancer Control Program, and a member of President Barack Obama’s Advisory Commission on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders.

Nguyen earned his medical degree from Stanford University, and completed his primary care medicine residency at UCSF before joining the UCSF faculty in 1997.

Louise C. Walter, MD

Louise C. Walter, MD

Louise C. Walter, MD, was appointed as chief of the Division of Geriatrics. She had served as interim division chief since the departure of Seth Landefeld, MD, in 2012.

Walter is a national leader in evaluating the real-world risks and benefits of cancer screening in older patients, and has developed novel methodology demonstrating the fundamental importance of life expectancy rather than age in determining screening risks and benefits. Her studies of older adults in poor health documented the extent to which screening can lead to clinical harm. Walter was elected to the American Society for Clinical Investigation, serves as associate director of the UCSF Clinical and Translational Science Institute Career Development Program, and is an associate editor for the JAMA series, “Care of the Aging Patient: From Evidence to Action.”

Walter received her medical degree from Stanford University, then completed an internal medicine residency and a geriatrics fellowship at UCSF. She joined the UCSF faculty in 2001, and is a geriatrician at the San Francisco Veterans Affairs Medical Center.


Eric J. Topol, MD

Eric J. Topol, MD

Eric J. Topol, MD, an alumnus of the UCSF internal medicine residency program, was the 18th Annual Holly Smith Visiting Professor this spring.

Topol, a cardiologist and geneticist, is director of the Scripps Translational Science Institute, the Gary and Mary West Endowed Chair of Innovative Medicine and a professor of genomics at the Scripps Research Institute. Topol’s research focuses on individualized medicine, using the genome and digital technologies to understand each person at the biologic, physiologic granular level to determine appropriate therapies and prevention. He is a medical innovator in wireless medicine, and cofounder of the West Wireless Health Institute.

His work in the genomics of heart attack has led to discovery of key genes recognized by the American Heart Association twice as one of the top 10 research advances. As a leader in clinical trials of novel therapeutics, Topol administered recombinant t-PA to the first patient in 1984, pioneered the clinical development of clopidogrel (Plavix), bivalirudin (Angiomax), and abciximab (ReoPro). He was the first physician to publish safety concerns on the cardiovascular risk of Vioxx. He recently published The Creative Destruction of Medicine: How the Digital Revolution Will Create Better Health Care.

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