NEW: RI Hospital, Miriam Name New Chief of Infectious Diseases

Tuesday, July 17, 2012


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"Leading researcher, consummate clinician educator"--incoming Chief of Infectious Diseases Eleftherios Mylonakis, M.D.,

Eleftherios Mylonakis, M.D., Ph.D. has been appointed chief of infectious diseases at Rhode Island Hospital and The Miriam Hospital. A highly regarded physician-scientist, Mylonakis comes to Rhode Island and The Miriam hospitals from Massachusetts General Hospital, where he served as an associate physician. He was also an associate professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School.

In his new role, Mylonakis will lead the infectious disease division at both Rhode Island and The Miriam hospitals and will also oversee one of the hospitals’ largest research divisions, with major initiatives under way in HIV/AIDS, viral hepatitis, hospital-acquired infections, tuberculosis, substance use and prisoner health.

Mylonakis: Leading researcher, consummate clinician-educator

“Dr. Mylonakis is not only a leading researcher in the field of antimicrobial agents but he is also a consummate clinician-educator who has mentored many successful young investigators,” said Timothy J. Babineau, M.D., president and chief executive officer at Rhode Island and The Miriam hospitals. “As someone who trained here, he understands our culture, expertise and potential, and is perfectly positioned to build upon these insights to inspire the next generation of researchers and propel us to become one of the nation’s leading infectious disease centers.”

Mylonakis is internationally recognized for his research on the study of host and microbial factors of infection and the discovery of antimicrobial agents, or substances that kill or inhibit the growth of microorganisms such as bacteria or fungi. His research has received support from the National Institutes of Health and the Ellison Medical Foundation and he has published more than 150 peer-reviewed scientific articles and book chapters. Mylonakis, who has edited five books on infectious diseases, is also the founding editor-in-chief of Virulence, an international peer-reviewed journal that focuses on microbial infections and host-pathogen interactions.

His accomplishments have led to several prestigious national awards, including the American Society for Microbiology’s Young Investigator Award and the Infectious Disease Society of America’s prestigious Oswald Avery Award. Mylonakis is also a 2011 inductee to the American Society for Clinical Investigation

Succeeding Timothy Flanigan, MD

Mylonakis succeeds Timothy Flanigan, M.D., who has served as the division chief since 1999. Under his leadership, the division has grown into one of the nation’s leading infectious disease research enterprises, receiving more than $8 million in federally funded clinical and basic science research projects. In addition to helping The Miriam Hospital’s Immunology Center establish itself as the regional leader in HIV clinical care, Flanigan also led a prestigious NIH-funded research training program aimed at reducing disease burden among substance abusers. Flanigan will remain with the division to continue to pursue his research and a number of important outside interests.

“It is a great honor to be selected for this role, and in many ways it feels like coming home,” Mylonakis said. “Tim Flanigan’s leadership has been tremendous and we are delighted that he will continue to be an invaluable asset for the division.”

He added, “Our clinicians provide exceptional patient-centric care, perform nationally and internationally recognized research and we continue to support local communities and global health initiatives while tackling new challenges, such as the rise in antibiotic-resistant infections. I look forward to collaborating with the entire team as we strive to be the bridge that will bring new discoveries from the bench to the bedside.”

A graduate of the National University of Athens in Greece, where he received both his medical degree and Ph.D., Mylonakis fulfilled his internship and residency in internal medicine at The Miriam Hospital, where he also served as chief resident. He then completed a fellowship in infectious diseases as Massachusetts General Hospital.

Mylonakis is also a professor of medicine at The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University.

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