The Bernard Lown Scholars In Cardiovascular Health Program
Dr. Bernard Lown, a Nobel Peace Prize recipient, has devoted over fifty years to the practice of medicine, the field of cardiology, and the betterment of humankind. He is the author of The Lost Art of Healing and Prescription for Survival: A Doctor’s Journey to End Nuclear Madness, a recently published memoir.
Established in 2008, the Bernard Lown Cardiovascular Scholars Program honors the talented Harvard cardiologist who has devoted his life to improving health among his patients and globally. Dr. Bernard Lown’s career of advancing the public health includes groundbreaking work on the causes and treatment of heart disease and cardiac arrhythmias, and the development of the direct current (DC) defibrillator that has become a lifesaving device worldwide. He is also world-renowned for his dedication to the prevention of nuclear war. In 1960, during the tensions of the Cold War, he was one of the founders of Physicians for Social Responsibility. In 1980, he and Dr. Evgeny Chazov co-founded International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War. They accepted the Nobel Peace Prize on behalf of the organization in 1985. For four decades, Dr. Lown brought young physicians and scholars from low and middle income countries to Harvard School of Public Health to learn how to prevent cardiovascular disease and to carry out research under the direction of outstanding professors. The Lown Scholars program is a continuation of that vision.
Program in Cardiovascular Epidemiology Predoctoral and Postdoctoral Training Program
This training grant is funding a new NHLBI CVD Epi Training Program in Behavior, the Environment, and Global Health, critically important scientific disciplines that are currently under-represented in NHLBI training. This Program is training both pre- and post-doctoral trainees in the rich academic environment of the Harvard School of Public Health and affiliated institutions locally and worldwide, bringing together outstanding faculty Mentors to provide integrated and interdisciplinary experiences and collaborative interactions, specialized curriculum with core and elective coursework, nondidactic practical career training, individual candidate training plans, and ongoing Program evaluation.
Cutting-edge didactic training and mentoring will create a new generation of highly skilled and enthusiastic investigators to study the impact of behavioral and environmental risk factors on cardiometabolic diseases; to elucidate the cultural norms, genomic variation, and biologic and sociologic pathways that modify these risk factors; and to understand and utilize the full set of epidemiologic, interventional, environmental, and policy tools to design, implement, and evaluate the most effective individualized, community, and policy interventions to reduce impact of harmful risk factors, facilitate expansion of protective behavioral and environmental factors, and attenuate or reverse the alarming global trends in cardiometabolic diseases.
Training includes modern methodological and analytical techniques required to study the intersections of cardiometabolic diseases with Behavior, including observational epidemiology and interventions in adulthood, adolescence, and early life; the Environment, including airborne and environmental toxins, social risks, and physical (built) environment; and Global Health, including observational epidemiology, demography, comparative risk assessment, and controlled interventions at both individual and community levels. This Training Program adds considerable strength and depth to the NHLBI’s commitment to understanding the behavioral and environmental determinants, preventive measures, and treatments of cardiovascular and metabolic diseases in both developed and developing nations.
Training a new generation of investigators to understand how behavioral and environmental risk factors impact cardiovascular and metabolic diseases, and how to cost-effectively and sustainably modify these factors, is among the most important scientific tasks of our time. These are global challenges, as changing behaviors and environmental risks are rapidly increasing cardiovascular and metabolic diseases worldwide and widespread use of costly new drug- and device-related treatments may not be practical or cost-effective.