Houston: Indian-origin Swathi Arur, professor and deputy chair of Genetics at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, has been selected as one of the 2022 Emerging Leaders in Health and Medicine Scholars by the National Academy of Medicine (NAM).
Arur is the first MD Anderson faculty member to be appointed to this prestigious group since its creation in 2016.
Her passion for health improvement was evident since her undergraduate days at the University of Delhi in 1991-1994, where she started a non-governmental organisation focused on providing better healthcare for children with HIV.
She earned her Ph.D. in Microbiology from the All India Institute of Medical Sciences in 2001 and continued her postgraduate work at the University of Connecticut, where she led efforts to integrate quantitative mass spectrometry with cell cultures in apoptosis research, one of the earliest instances of this cutting-edge proteomics technology.
“We are thrilled that Dr Arur is being recognised by the National Academy of Medicine for both her contributions and extraordinary leadership in the life sciences,” said Peter Pisters, president of MD Anderson. “Her passion, expertise and foundational work in advancing cancer metastasis research are invaluable to our institution, and we applaud her selection as part of this exemplary group of scholars.” The NAM Emerging Leaders Forum, to be held in Washington, DC on April 18-19, 2023, will allow these scholars to engage in interdisciplinary discussions among the nation’s rising leaders in health and medicine. ELHM Scholars also will contribute to shaping the priorities of NAM by focusing on pressing medical challenges, improving health policies, and building equity for all.
“We do not inherit a perfect world. Instead, the world is more often a product of our actions and of what we pay forward and leave behind,” Arur said. “To be named an emerging leader is not only an honour, but it also gives me an opportunity to work with and learn from global leaders in health and medicine policy who constantly strive to make the world better.” Arur has received numerous distinctions so far including MD Anderson Presidential Scholar in 2016, Andrew Sabin Family Fellow in 2017, Distinguished Faculty Mentor in 2018, and 2022 Presidential Honoree for Education and Mentorship Advancement.
In 2020, Arur was elected Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. She currently serves on the board of directors and is chair of the Awards Committee for the Genetics Society of America.
She is a standing study member of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Cellular, Molecular and Integrative Reproduction study section and an Editor at Development. She also is the co-chair and chair of the Gordon Research Conference in Developmental Biology in 2023 and 2025, respectively.
NAM, founded in 1970, is an independent organisation of professionals that advises the entire scientific community on critical health issues.
The Emerging Leaders in Health and Medicine (ELHM) Program was started to increase the academy’s engagement with exceptional, interdisciplinary early- to mid-career professionals in biomedical science, population health, health care, health policy and other related fields.