Jack A. Yanovski, MD, PhD is Chief of the Section on Growth and Obesity in the Program on Developmental Endocrinology and Genetics. Dr. Yanovski obtained his medical degree in 1986 at the University of Pennsylvania, where he was also awarded a PhD in Physiological Psychology in 1989. After residency training in Pediatrics at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Dr. Yanovski completed a fellowship in Pediatric Endocrinology at the National Institutes of Health, conducting clinical and basic research with Gordon Cutler in the Section on Developmental Endocrinology in the Developmental Endocrinology Branch, where he developed the dexamethasone-suppressed ovine corticotropin-releasing hormone test for the differential diagnosis of hypercortisolism. This test has become part of the standard armamentarium of tests used by endocrinologists. Dr. Yanovski then remained at the National Institutes of Health to serve as Chief of Pediatrics for the Warren Grant Magnuson Clinical Center from 1994-1998. In response to the growing problem of pediatric obesity, Dr. Yanovski returned to NICHD to create the Unit on Growth and Obesity in the NICHD’s Developmental Endocrinology Branch and serve as its Head.
Dr. Yanovski has carried out a series of clinical studies related to the evaluation and treatment of overweight and obesity in children and adults, as well as laboratory investigations of the molecular etiologies of obesity. His randomized controlled trials have elucidated the limitations of current pharmacotherapeutic approaches for treatment of pediatric obesity and his observational studies have demonstrated the importance of disinhibited eating behaviors for pediatric obesity. His lab has also elucidated the roles of the melanocortin 3 receptor and brain-derived neurotrophic factor in human body weight regulation. Dr. Yanovski has authored or co-authored over 200 manuscripts and he has served as a regular reviewer for the New England Journal of Medicine, Lancet, JAMA, and many other journals. He has served as a standing member of the NSCF, NIH Study Section, as a consultant for FDA advisory panels, and on the editorial boards of several obesity, pediatric, and endocrine journals. Dr. Yanovski has also served as Chair of The Obesity Society’s annual Scientific Meeting. Among other awards, he has received the Public Health Service’s Outstanding Service Medal for innovative studies on obesity.