Yale Receives $2 Million Medical Research Endowment from Bayer Pharmaceuticals Corporation Dr. Sonia Caprio Named First Bayer Fellow

Bayer Pharmaceuticals Corporation has created a $2 million endowment to help advance cutting-edge medical research at Yale School of Medicine.

Through this new program, called the Bayer Endowment for Scholars in Medicine and Management, a fellowship will be awarded by Yale each year to a faculty member who is making significant advances in medicine or health care management. Of particular interest are the areas of obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular health, infectious diseases, men’s health and medical economics and marketing.

“Biomedical research stands among Yale’s greatest academic strengths, and the encouragement we are receiving from Bayer will help us remain at the forefront of research and clinical treatment,” said Yale President Richard C. Levin. “It is my hope that the work performed each year by Yale’s Bayer Fellows will aid us in our goal of accomplishing substantial improvements in worldwide health.”

David A. Kessler, Dean of the Yale School of Medicine, agrees. “We are in the midst of one of the greatest scientific revolutions in our history,” he said. “The Bayer endowment will help translate those discoveries into better patient care.”

Kessler was responsible for choosing the first Bayer Fellow at Yale. She is Dr. Sonia Caprio, associate professor of pediatric endocrinology, who for the past 15 years has devoted herself to clinical investigation of the underlying metabolic changes, such as insulin resistance, associated with obesity and type 2 diabetes in children and adolescents.

“I am honored to receive this special support for my work,” said Caprio, the director of the Yale Pediatric Obesity and Type 2 Diabetes Program. “There is a growing and serious epidemic of childhood diabetes, especially among African-Americans and Hispanics, and it is the goal of my research to shed light on its causes and to develop new strategies for its prevention and treatment.”

Caprio earned her medical degree from the Universita di Medicine e Chirurgia in Naples, Italy, and she has held research positions at Temple University and Yale. Her groundbreaking work has received honors from diabetes organizations in the United States and abroad, and she has been the principal investigator of studies published in The New England Journal of Medicine, Diabetes, and The American Journal of Physiology, among numerous other medical journals.

In addition to supporting the work of the Bayer Fellow, the Bayer initiative envisions greater interaction between Yale scientists and Bayer employees in the form of lectures and conferences on topics of shared interest.

“Bayer is pleased that this new endowment allows us to build on a longstanding relationship with such a prestigious academic institution as Yale University,” said Colin Foster, President & CEO of Bayer Pharmaceuticals Corporation. “This powerful relationship provides value to both parties-supporting the work of tenured Yale academics in advancing the understanding of modern health care issues and providing Bayer scientists with invaluable insights that will ultimately enhance our creativity and innovation.”

The Bayer endowment comes at a time when Yale has embarked on a 10-year, $1 billion program to refurbish and expand its science facilities. In February, the School of Medicine’s new center for biomedical research and education opened, providing 457,000 square feet of state-of-the art laboratories and classrooms in the largest structure built by Yale in more than 70 years.

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Karen N. Peart: karen.peart@yale.edu, 203-432-1326