Professor Brent Stockwell Elected to National Academy of Medicine

October 09, 2023

The National Academy of Medicine today announced that Brent R. Stockwell, William R. Kenan, Jr. Professor of Biological Sciences and Professor of Chemistry within Arts & Sciences, and Chair of the Department of Biological Sciences, has been elected to the academy. Professor Stockwell is also a member of the Columbia University Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center and of the Department of Pathology and Cell Biology, Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons.

Founded in 1970 as the Institute of Medicine, the National Academy of Medicine (NAM) is one of three academies that make up the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (the National Academies) in the United States.  For those at the top of their field, NAM membership reflects “the height of professional achievement and commitment to service.”

“We are thrilled Brent Stockwell has been recognized by the Academy for his pioneering work in the biological sciences and more broadly,” said Amy E. Hungerford, Dean and Executive Vice President of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences.  “His research, innovative teaching, and dedicated service exemplify our commitment to pushing the boundaries of science while achieving new levels impact in the world, including on issues related to public health and the treatment of human disease.”

Professor Stockwell’s research involves the discovery of small molecules that can be used to understand and treat cancer and neurodegeneration, with a focus on biochemical mechanisms governing cell metabolism and cell survival. In a series of papers from 2003-2012, Dr. Stockwell discovered a new form of cell death termed ferroptosis. Since then, his lab, working with a growing number of labs around the world, has defined many of the major mechanisms governing ferroptosis, as well as key reagents for studying this new form of cell death.

In addition to his numerous awards, Dr. Stockwell has been in the top one percent of highly cited researchers the last three years, and was named as one of the 50 most influential life science individuals in New York. He has developed a new blended learning approach to teaching biochemistry to Columbia undergraduates, performed randomized controlled trials to examine the effectiveness of teaching methods, and introduced the use of virtual reality and augmented and mixed reality into his biochemistry course.  He is the author of The Quest for the Cure: The Science and Stories Behind the Next Generation of Medicines and a top-ranked writer on Medium.

Learn more about Professor Stockwell’s research and laboratory here.