Jeffrey Towbin headshot

Jeffrey Towbin, MD, FHFSA, FACC, FAAP, FAHA

​2023 HFSA Pioneer Award Winner

Chief Pediatric Cardiology 
St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital 
Memphis, TN

Jeffrey Towbin, MD, FHFSA, FACC, FAAP, FAHA was named the ​2023 HFSA Pioneer Award winner.

My clinical expertise is in the diagnosis and care of cardiomyopathies, including arrhythmogenic cardiomyopathies, heart failure,  cardio-oncology-related heart failure, sudden death, and transplantation (Board Certified Pediatric Cardiologist; Director of Cardiomyopathy/Heart Failure & Transplant Services from 1991-present; Medical Director, Pediatric Cardio-Oncology and Heart Failure Service, MD Anderson Cancer Hospital, 2005-2009 and Director, Cardio-Oncology Program, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital 2015-present) and my research expertise is in the molecular genetics and mechanistic basis of these disorders and includes clinical descriptions, outcomes, novel treatment approaches, and development of registries to longitudinally track cardiomyopathies from childhood through adulthood. My research laboratory team has been a leader in gene discovery of cardiomyopathies, arrhythmias, sudden cardiac death, vascular disorders, congenital heart disease, and syndromes, as well as viral causes of myocarditis, heart transplant rejection, and transplant coronary vasculopathy. I have also pioneered the concept of pathway-focused candidate gene and candidate protein and protein:protein interaction analysis using my “final common pathway hypothesis” and have defined disease mechanisms and targeted therapies using animal models. We are currently studying pathways that overlap to result in cancer and a potential pre-therapy at-risk myocardium and post-therapy-induced cardiomyopathy. I have been continuously funded since 1987 as PI or co-Investigator on several university-, agency-, and NIH-funded grants, including a current MPI RO1 (Contact PI; NIH-NHLBI 1R01-HL146473-01) entitled “Discovery of modifier genes in cardiomyopathy”. Recently ending grants as Principal Investigator includes the NIH-funded multi-center multi-PI grant entitled “Genetics, Mechanisms, and Clinical Phenotypes of Arrhythmogenic Cardiomyopathy” and Institutional PI of the “Genotype-Phenotype Associations in Pediatric Cardiomyopathies” RO1 as well. I am very experienced in the clinical care, clinical diagnostics, molecular genetics and repository arenas. I developed and lead the clinical teams in Heart Transplantation and Cardiomyopathy/Heart Failure and laid the groundwork for development of the research studies performed previously at Baylor College of Medicine, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, and currently at Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, and the University of Tennessee Health Science Center- Memphis by developing translational, team-oriented research programs, recruiting/enrolling defined populations of research subjects and informative families, and developing relationships with other skilled clinicians, geneticists, and biostatisticians to successfully complete the proposed research. These studies have included published work on biomarkers and gene discovery with genotype-phenotype correlation, as well as mechanistic studies using cell and animal modeling. Dr. Towbin has published over 590 peer-reviewed manuscripts, many in high impact journals such as Nature, Science, Cell, Nature Genetics, The Lancet, NEJM, JAMA, JCI, Circulation and the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, amongst others. His major areas of interest and published works include genetics and mechanisms of cardiomyopathies including acquired forms such as myocarditis and oncologic   therapy-induced cardiomyopathy, heart failure, sudden death, myocarditis, and cardiac transplantation rejection. Dr. Towbin’s h-Index in 2023 is 149 (Research Gate); 138 (Scopus) and his D-Index 2023 is 138 (Research.Com; #1 in Pediatric Cardiology in World and in US; #597 in Medicine in US; #997 in Medicine in World).