José F. Caro, MD, Chairman
of Medicine Joins Pharmaceutical Company
Jose´ F. Caro, MD, the Magee Professor of Medicine and department chair,
Jefferson Medical College (JMC), has resigned to become vice president of
diabetes research and clinical investigation at Eli Lilly effective July
"When Dr. Caro became chairman, he identified three challenges for
the department: to translate new medical discoveries from bench to bedside;
to lead an educational program where the majority of graduates choose primary-care
careers; and to address the changes brought on by healthcare reform,"
said Joseph S. Gonnella, MD, senior vice president for academic affairs
and dean, JMC. "I am pleased to say he has met his goals in every area.
During his time with Jefferson, the department's National Institutes of
Health research funding has nearly tripled; the residency program in medicine
has become the largest in Pennsylvania ­p; with more than 50 percent
of graduates in primary care ­p; and outpatient encounters have more
While at Jefferson, Dr. Caro and his research team made several important
discoveries in the understanding of obesity. Last year, they were the first
to publish work on the cloning and sequencing of the mouse obesity gene
in humans. Earlier this year, Dr. Caro and his investigators created a blood
test to determine the level of leptin (the hormone product of the obesity
gene) in humans. These findings are helping scientists to unravel the mystery
of human obesity and will surely lead to better methods for weight control.
In addition, Dr. Caro's research has helped others to recognize obesity
as a disease, just like diabetes or hypertension, that must be understood
and controlled for better health.
"Dr. Caro's four years as chairman of the department of medicine reflect
his outstanding leadership, research breakthroughs and vision for the department.
Jefferson's department of medicine is strong and growing ­p; a testament
to Jose´ Caro's extraordinary talent, energy and commitment,"
noted Paul C. Brucker, MD, president of Thomas Jefferson University.
Commenting about leaving Jefferson, Dr. Caro said, "I am extremely
fond of this institution. So much so that I have been here three times -
for a residency in internal medicine, as a junior faculty member and as
department chair. I do not believe that this is my last time at Jefferson."
Of his challenge at Eli Lilly, Dr. Caro said, "I know the scientists
and philosophy of the company. My job will not be to just make pills, but
to participate in a more fundamental way to maintain the health of the population.
I have a passion for research, and I feel that if I can contribute to the
creation of intelligent drugs for the treatment of obesity or diabetes,
my work will be worthwhile."
University president Paul C. Brucker, MD,
has received the Board of Directors Humanitarianism Award from the Artman
Home, a residential and nursing community located in Ambler, Pa. The Humanitarianism
Award is presented annually to an individual who has demonstrated a lifelong
commitment and dedication to the service of others.
Raymond E. Joseph, MD, FACG, clinical
assistant professor of medicine/gastroenterology and hepatology, Jefferson
Medical College, received The Freedom Medal for his service to the community.
Mayor Edward G. Rendell was among the others so honored at the same ceremony.