Stony Brook University’s Renaissance School of Medicine has named Dr. Peter Igarashi, a nephrologist and physician scientist, as its new dean, effective Sept. 12.
Igarashi comes to Stony Brook from the University of Minnesota Medical School, where he is the Nesbitt Chair, professor and head of the Department of Medicine.
At the University of Minnesota, the new dean oversaw 600 full-time and affiliate faculty, 100 adjunct faculty, and over 240 residents and fellows, all while increasing National Institutes of Health funding by 60%.
At UMN, he also helped to cut gender pay disparities, appointed women to leadership positions, developed new multidisciplinary programs, and created an Office of Faculty Affairs and Diversity.
“Dr. Igarashi is a superb, academically accomplished physician leader with a highly successful track record of clinical program growth and research advancement,” Dr. Hal Paz, executive vice president of Health Sciences at SBU and chief executive officer of Stony Brook University Medicine, said in a statement.
Igarashi has received over $25 million in funding from the NIH during a career in which he has studied polycystic kidney disease, transcriptional regulation, epigenetics and kidney development.
Polycystic kidney disease, or PKD, is an inherited disorder that involves the development of clusters of cysts, primarily in the kidney. Symptoms of the disease can include high blood pressure, loss of kidney function, chronic pain and the growth of cysts in the liver, among others.
His lab developed unique lines of transgenic mice that he has used to study kidney-specific transgene expression and gene targeting.
In addition to writing nine chapters in textbooks, Dr. Igarashi has also authored more than 100 peer-reviewed journal articles.
Before his seven-year stint at the University of Minnesota, Dr. Igarashi had been Chief of the Division of Nephrology and founding director of the O’Brien Kidney Research Core Center at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas.
At the University of Texas, Dr. Igarashi created services to provide regular kidney dialysis to undocumented and other often marginalized patients. He also led an effort to use artificial intelligence to identify and optimize co-management of patients with hypertension, diabetes, and chronic kidney disease in primary care practices.
A recipient of the NIH Merit Award, Dr. Igarashi also won the 2015 Lillian Jean Kaplan International Prize in polycystic kidney disease. The award honored his contribution to the goal of developing treatments and a cure for polycystic kidney disease.
Dr. Igarashi earned his medical degree from the UCLA School of Medicine and completed an internal medicine residency at the University of California Davis Medical Center. He did a nephrology fellowship at Yale University and also taught at the Yale University School of Medicine.
Dr. Igarashi is board-certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine. He is a member of the American Heart Association Kidney Council, the American Physiological Society, the American Society for Clinical Investigation, the American Society of Nephrology and the Association of American Physicians.
Dr. William Wertheim had been the interim dean of the Renaissance School of Medicine since February 2021, following Dr. Kenneth Kaushansky’s retirement after serving as dean and senior vice president of health sciences for 11 years.
Dr. Wertheim will return to his role as vice dean for graduate medical education. He will also have a leadership role at the Stony Brook Medicine Community Medical Group, which is an arm of Stony Brook Medicine and includes over 35 community practices with over 50 locations across Long Island.