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James D. Yager, Jr

YagerJamesJAMES D. YAGER, JR, the Edyth H. Schoenrich Professor of Preventive Medicine, is a professor of toxicology in the Department of Environmental Health Sciences and senior associate dean for academic affairs in the Bloomberg School of Public Health. He also holds a joint appointment in the Department of Oncology at the School of Medicine.

Dr. Yager has a doctoral degree in developmental and cell biology from the University of Connecticut and did postdoctoral work in chemical carcinogenesis and DNA repair mechanisms at the University of Wisconsin’s McArdle Laboratory for Cancer Research. He joined the Hopkins faculty in 1989 after serving on the faculty of the Dartmouth Medical School and as an associate director of the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Norris Cotton Cancer Center. He headed the school’s Division of Toxicology from 1989-2000 when he was appointed by Dr. Al Sommer as the senior associate dean for academic affairs. In this position he oversees the entire academic mission of the school.

Dr. Yager is an expert on the mechanisms of estrogen carcinogenesis. His research is focused on understanding genetic and environmental susceptibility factors related to breast cancer with the goal of developing strategies for prevention and understanding how environmental chemicals with estrogenic or antiestrogenic activities may disrupt estrogen receptor signaling pathways. Key original observations that pertain to the role of estrogens in the etiology of cancer and that have resulted in follow-up studies in his laboratory and the laboratories of other investigators include the findings that a low activity form of an enzyme involved in the inactivation of reactive estrogen metabolites represents a risk factor for breast cancer, and that the estrogen receptor resides within the mitochondria and mediates increased transcription of mitochondrial DNA-encoded genes as part of the overall constellation of the cellular response to estrogens that contributes to cell growth and protection from cell death. He was the keynote speaker at the 1999 Gordon Conference on Hormonal Carcinogenesis and serves on a variety of advisory boards and review panels, including NIEHS review panels, and the NAS/NRC Committee on Toxicity Testing and Assessment of Environmental Agents. He is also a member of the Council on Education in Public Health, the national accrediting organization for all schools of public health. He is on the editorial boards of the Journal of Environmental Pathology, Toxicology and Oncology; Toxicological Sciences, and Chemical Research in Toxicology. He is the author or co-author of 77 journal publications, 14 book chapters and numerous published abstracts. Dr. Yager is a member of the Delta Omega Honor Society, Alpha Chapter and has been a recipient of Bloomberg School’s Advising, Mentoring and Teaching Recognition Award.