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Wayne State University Professor Gerald Feldman named president of American College of Medical Genetics and Genomics

March 31, 2015

Gerald Feldman, M.D., Ph.D., professor of Molecular Medicine and Genetics, Pathology, and Pediatrics for the Wayne State University School of Medicine, and medical director of the Division of Laboratory Genetics and Molecular Pathology for the Detroit Medical Center-University Laboratories, is the new president of the American College of Medical Genetics and Genomics, the national professional organization for clinical and laboratory genetics professionals.

"The era of the genetic and genomic revolution is here," said Dr. Feldman, of West Bloomfield. "New technologies, new treatments and identification of new genetic disorders will improve patient care in ways we could not have even envisioned a few years ago. I look forward to serving as president of the organization that is leading these efforts."

In his two years as president-elect, Dr. Feldman has worked with the ACMG committees that provide national guidance on issues like organizational structure and identifying conflicts of interest, which are critical as the scope of medical genetics continues to expand. He also chaired a task force that developed an updated scope of practice for board-certified medical genetics professionals. His broad background in medical education, clinical care, scientific research and laboratory management have been particularly valuable in these roles, making him ideally suited to represent the interests of ACMG members.

Dr. Feldman, who joined the WSU School of Medicine faculty in 1999, is program director for the Newborn Screening Metabolic Management Program at Children's Hospital of Michigan and program director for the Medical Genetics Residency and the Medical Biochemical Genetics Fellowship programs at the Detroit Medical Center/Wayne State University School of Medicine.

He divides his time between the clinical practice of medical genetics and inborn errors of metabolism, molecular diagnostics, and medical genetics education and training.

The author of more than 80 peer-reviewed publications, book chapters and reviews, his research interests include fragile X syndrome and cystic fibrosis. More recently, his interests have focused on newborn screening, specifically in the area of long-term follow-up and management.

Dr. Feldman has a special interest in medical genetics education. In 2004, he was a co-organizer of the first Banbury Summit on the future of medical genetics training. He served as president of the Association of Professors of Human and Medical Genetics from 2006 to 2008. He has been chair and a member of Michigan's Genetic Advisory, Newborn Screening and Metabolic Quality Improvement committees, and has served on a number of ACMG committees, including as program chair of the 2007 annual Clinical Genetics Meeting and as director of Clinical Genetics from 2005 to 2011.

His principal research interests are tied to the diagnosis and management of patients with genetic disorders. He is a co-investigator of the nationwide Inborn Errors of Metabolism Collaborative, a program supported by the National Institutes of Health to collect data and share best practices for the benefit of children who are born with rare genetic disorders in which the body cannot naturally metabolize certain fats, proteins and sugars in food. He also is program director and lead investigator for a statewide program awarded to the Children's Hospital of Michigan by the Michigan Department of Community Health: the Newborn Screening Management Program. He has been part of a collaborative effort between Wayne State University, Children's Hospital of Michigan, the Detroit Medical Center and Al-Quds University to develop newborn screening programs in Palestine.

"Dr. Feldman has a long history with ACMG, and through his extensive committee work, he's taken an active role in steering us to where we are today," said Michael Watson, Ph.D., ACMG executive director. "His institutional knowledge and experience working across the full spectrum of clinical genetics services and education will help our organization going forward, in an era when genomic information promises to play a bigger role in medicine than it ever has before."

The ACMG works to advance the practice of medical genetics and genomics by providing education, resources and a voice for more than 1,600 biochemical, clinical, medical and molecular geneticists, genetic counselors and other health care professionals. The organization advocates for quality genetic services in health care and in public health, and promotes the development of methods to diagnose, treat and prevent genetic disease.