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[3rd Dr. Li Dak-Sum Lecture]

Date: March 2, 2018 (Friday)

Time: 5:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.

Venue: Cheung Kung Hai Lecture Theatre 3, G/F, William M.W. Mong Block, Faculty of Medicine Building, 21 Sassoon Road, Pokfulam, Hong Kong

Behind the Scenes at The US National Academy of Medicine: Shaping the US and Global Agenda for Health and Medicine


Professor Victor J. Dzau


National Academy of Medicine

Speaker Info

Victor J. Dzau was born in China and grew up in Hong Kong. He is the President of the National Academy of Medicine (NAM), formerly the Institute of Medicine (IOM). In addition, he serves as Vice Chair of the National Research Council. Dr. Dzau is Chancellor Emeritus and James B. Duke Professor of Medicine at Duke University and the past President and CEO of the Duke University Health System. Previously, Dr. Dzau was the Hersey Professor of Theory and Practice of Medicine and Chairman of Medicine at Harvard Medical School’s Brigham and Women’s Hospital, as well as Chairman of the Department of Medicine at Stanford University.

He is an internationally acclaimed leader and scientist whose work has improved health care in the United States and globally. His seminal work in cardiovascular medicine and genetics laid the foundation for development of the class of lifesaving drugs known as ACE inhibitors, used globally to treat hypertension and heart failure. Dr. Dzau pioneered gene therapy for vascular disease and was the first to introduce DNA decoy molecules to block transcriptions in human in vivo. His pioneering research in cardiac regeneration led to the Paracrine Hypothesis of stem cell action and his recent strategy of direct cardiac reprogramming using microRNA.

In his role as a leader in health care, Dr. Dzau has led efforts in innovation to improve health, including the development of the Duke Translational Medicine Institute, the Duke Global Health Institute, the Duke-National University of Singapore Graduate Medical School, and the Duke Institute for Health Innovation. He has served as a member of the Advisory Committee to the Director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), chaired the NIH Cardiovascular Disease Advisory Committee and currently chairs the NIH Cardiovascular Stem Cell Biology and Translational Consortia. He has served on the Board of Directors of Medtronic, Genzyme and Alnylam and was on the Board of Health Governors of the World Economic Forum.

Currently he is a member of the Board of the Singapore Health System, member of the Health Biomedical Sciences the International Advisory Council of Singapore and Advisory Council of the Imperial College Health Partners, UK.

Since arriving at the National Academies, Dr Dzau has led important initiatives such as the Commission on a Global Health Risk Framework; the Human Gene Editing Initiative; and Vital Directions for Health and Health Care, and the NAM Grand Challenges in Healthy Longevity.

Among his many honors and recognitions are the Max Delbreck Medal from Charite, Humboldt and Max Plank, Germany, the Distinguished Scientist Award from the American Heart Association, Ellis Island Medal of Honor, and the Henry Freisen International Prize. In 2014, he received the Public Service Medal from the President of Singapore. He has been elected to the National Academy of Medicine, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the European Academy of Sciences and Arts, and Academia Sinica. He has received 13 honorary doctorates including from Hong Kong University.


In these days of partisan politics, public mistrust of government decisions, and information overload, the need for academies that can provide decision makers and the public with independent and evidence-based advice has never been more pressing. Since its founding, the National Academy of Medicine (NAM) (formerly the Institute of Medicine; IOM) has played that role. Founded under the 1863 Congressional charter of the National Academy of Science (NAS) signed by President Abraham Lincoln, the IOM was founded as the health arm of NAS in 1970 and was reconstituted as the NAM in 2015. Many of our reports are congressionally mandated or commissioned by government agencies, and their recommendations have lasting impact on US health and science policy. In addition, our work has extended beyond advising the US government to health sciences communities and the public in US and globally. We seek to identify and generate momentum around critical issues in health; marshal diverse expertise to build evidence-based solutions; inspire action through collaboration and public engagement; and foster the next generation of leaders and innovators in the US and globally. The New York Times describes the IOM/NAM as “the most esteemed and authoritative adviser on issues of health and medicine, and its reports can transform medical thinking around the world.”

The NAM’s reputation and influence on science, medicine, and health stem from the distinction and excellence of its members as well as the quality and independence of its advice. Freedom from any political affiliation and commercial interest combined with strict adherence to policies and procedures ensure that our advice is based on the best available evidence and free from any bias.

The NAM is an academy of learned scholars and experts whose disciplines and interests span basic research to medical sciences, engineering, social sciences, public health, healthcare delivery, policy, and more. There are over 2,000 members and members emeriti, including nearly 50 Nobel Laureates. Each year 80 new members (70 regular and 10 international members) are elected on the basis of their outstanding professional achievement and commitment to service. The sheer excellence, stature, and integrity of NAM members and nonmember volunteers help ensure that our work is balanced and of the highest quality.

Our consensus reports have influenced the trajectory of health and shaped the direction of biomedical research. Some of our most influential reports include: To Err is Human (1999); Mapping and Sequencing the Human Genome (1988), Toward Precision Medicine (2011). In addition to consensus reports, we establish Forums and Action Collaboratives to convene multiple stakeholders to discuss, debate and share knowledge, and collaborate in an ongoing fashion. Recent important NAM initiatives include: Global Health Risk Framework report ”Neglected Dimension of Global Security”, Human Gene Editing initiative, Vital Directions for Health and Health Care, and Grand Challenge for Health Longevity.

With nearly 50 years of history and experience as a trusted scientific and health adviser resulting from the integrity of its processes and the participation of the world’s experts, the NAM is committed to providing evidence and advice, forums to address complex challenges, and innovative space to accelerate progress in health and medicine and to ensure a healthier future for everyone. As we look to the future, the NAM will build on its rich history and trajectory to advance science, health and medicine and promote evidence-based policy.


For enquiries, please contact us at +852 2831 5391 or


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