Robert Califf Named FDA Deputy Commissioner for Medical Products and Tobacco

January 26, 2015

SILVER SPRING, MD — Dr Robert Califf, long synonymous with cardiovascular medicine at Duke University Medical Center, has been named the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) deputy commissioner for medical products and tobacco[1].

Califf, scheduled to join the FDA in late February, is currently the vice chancellor of clinical and translational research at Duke University, as well as the director of the Duke Translational Medicine Institute (DTMI) and professor of medicine at Duke University School of Medicine. He is the cofounder of the Duke Clinical Research Institute (DCRI) and editor in chief of the American Heart Journal.

As part of the new senior leadership role within the FDA, Califf will work with the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER), the Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, the Center for Devices and Radiological Health, and the Center for Tobacco Products. According to the FDA announcement, Califf will provide advice and policy direction, as well as manage other agency priorities, including personalized medicine, orphan drugs, pediatric medicine, and the advisory-committee system.

In a press release announcing the hiring, FDA Commissioner Dr Margaret Hamburg said Califf's "deep knowledge and experience in the areas of medicine and clinical research will enable the agency to capitalize on and improve upon the significant advances we've made in medical product development and regulation over the past few years."

Califf graduated from Duke University Medical School in 1978 after completing his undergraduate degree at the same institution. He did an internship and internal medicine residency at the University of California, San Francisco, and then returned to Duke to complete a fellowship in cardiology.

In addition to his many clinical and research roles, Califf serves on the advisory board of the theheart.org|Medscape Cardiology. He has been a contributing editor to theheart.org since its founding in 1999 and is the host of the long-running series "The Life and Times of Leading Cardiologists."

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