Richard A. Flavell, Ph.D., chair of the new Department of Immunobiology at Yale and an internationally recognized scientist, was named to the Institute of Medicine (IOM) in October.

The IOM was established in 1970 by the National Academy of Sciences and is recognized as a national resource for independent, scientifically informed analyses and recommendations on issues related to human health. Those elected to the institute have made significant contributions to the advancement of medical science, health care and public health, and election is considered one of the highest honors in the health sciences.

Flavell,the Sterling Professor of Immunobiology, studies the molecular basis of T-cell differentiation in the immune system. His research team has used genomic approaches to identify the genes that are selectively expressed in T-cell lineages, and has used gene targeting, transgenic mice, and retroviral technology to elucidate the function of these genes and their target sequences.

A Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator, Flavell also studies the mechanisms of programmed cell death using mice lacking death-effector molecules, and he investigates the molecular and cellular bases of autoimmune disease.

“Richard’s research is outstanding, clearly placing him among the best immunologists in the world,” says Dean Robert J. Alpern, M.D., Ensign Professor of Medicine. “This is combined with a talent for leadership that has allowed him to cultivate an immunology program that is unsurpassed anywhere. His wisdom and experience should prove valuable to the Institute of Medicine.”