Vinay Kumar, MD, appointed chairman of pathology

February 8, 2000

Vinay Kumar, MD, has been appointed professor and chairman of the department of pathology, effective March 1, 2000. An authority on the cellular and molecular biology of natural killer cells, Kumar has been a leader in understanding the origin and differentiation of these cells and their role in the rejection of transplanted bone marrow. He is also an author of Basic Pathology, one of the best selling texts in the field.

Dr. Kumar, 55, comes to the University of Chicago from the University of Texas, Southwestern Medical Center, in Dallas, where he was the Vernie A. Stembridge Professor of Pathology, associate dean for medical education, and vice chairman for educational affairs in the department of pathology.

“We are extremely pleased to have found a scholar with such extensive clinical experience and such distinguished educational and research credentials,” said Glenn D. Steele, MD, PhD, dean of the biological sciences division and vice president for medical affairs at the University of Chicago. “His arrival at Chicago will bring new strengths to the department of pathology and should also support our established programs in transplant immunology and cancer biology.

Born in India in 1944, Dr. Kumar graduated with honors, at the age of 17, from Poona University. He earned his MBBS, (the equivalent of the MD degree) in 1967, at the age of 22, from Punjab University Medical College, in Amritsar, where he was named “Best Medical Graduate” for that year, winning the Pfizer Award and the Gold Medal for highest achievement as a medical student. He completed both his PhD in experimental pathology and his residency in anatomic pathology and hematology in 1972 at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences, where he was awarded the Khanolkar Prize for outstanding research in pathology.

He came to the United States in 1972 to join what was, at the time, a most renowned pathology faculty at Boston City Hospital and Boston University, where he was honored for his teaching and research skills in both the basic and clinical sciences. He continued to be honored as a teacher and scientist after joining the faculty at U.T. Southwestern in 1982, where he became a professor of pathology in 1983.

The author or co-author of five pathology textbooks and teaching aids, Dr. Kumar has published more than 100 original articles in scientific journals, a dozen book chapters, and nearly 20 review articles. He has lectured throughout the U.S. and Europe, served on the editorial boards of several journals, including the Journal of Immunology, and recently completed his term as president of the American Society of Investigative Pathology.

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