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Clancy Mullan Named 2024 Surgeon Scientist Training Program Scholar for Yale Department of Surgery

April 26, 2024
by Cecelia Smith

The Yale Department of Surgery proudly announces Dr. Clancy Mullan as the 2024 inductee to the prestigious Surgeon Scientist Training Program (SSTP). Dr. Mullan, a resident in the Integrated Thoracic Surgery Training Program, is the third scholar to join the initiative. Established in 2021, SSTP addresses a critical need in academic training and pipeline development, offering surgical residents a unique platform to pursue uninterrupted research endeavors alongside their clinical responsibilities.

Dr. Peter Gruber, Vice Chair of Research, emphasizes the program's mission to equip residents with the essential tools and support to thrive in academic medicine.

"The goal of the Surgeon Scientist Training Program (SSTP) is to optimally prepare surgical residents with a laser focus on research for a career in academic medicine, providing a runway for a smooth landing from residency to faculty," says Dr. Gruber.

Central to the SSTP experience is its comprehensive framework, which spans from interns' initial year through graduation, offering formal research tutelage, resources, and protected time. This structure, unique in its design, enables residents to immerse themselves in concentrated research activities while progressing through their training.

"Advancing research to a stage where it is ready and relevant for grant funding requires significant time. SSTP 'fast-tracks' this process, one that often takes many years as a junior faculty. SSTP empowers trainees to maintain the scientific momentum built during their dedicated research years and emerge as highly competitive candidates for faculty positions and funding opportunities," explains Dr. Nita Ahuja, Chair of the Department of Surgery.

SSTP empowers trainees to maintain the scientific momentum built during their dedicated research years and emerge as highly competitive candidates for faculty positions and funding opportunities.

Dr. Nita Ahuja

Dr. Mullan has spent his formative research years at Yale in the lab of Dr. Jordan Pober; his work revolves around endothelial alloreactivity and the development of novel therapeutics to mitigate transplant rejection. Raised in Raleigh, North Carolina, he pursued his undergraduate education at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he distinguished himself in Chemistry and Mathematics.

Continuing his academic pursuits at the Donald and Barbara Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell, Mullan delved into the intricacies of nicotinic signaling and mitochondrial function under the guidance of Dr. Kaie Ojamaa. His exemplary achievements, including induction into Alpha Omega Alpha honor society, foreshadowed his emergence as a leader in the field of investigative medicine.

Transitioning to the Yale Integrated Thoracic Surgery program, Mullan expanded his research repertoire, where his work in the Pober lab has resulted in numerous publications on outcomes research utilizing diverse datasets.

Dr. Mullan follows in the footsteps of previous SSTP scholars, Holly Blackburn MD and Makoto Mori MD, PhD, who were selected as inaugural scholars in the program. Dr. Blackburn, a General Surgery resident and PhD student, has garnered recognition with an ACS scholarship, while Dr. Mori, a Cardiothoracic I6 resident who completed his PhD with Harlan Krumholtz, with substantial recognition from editorial boards and external funding sources.

Their achievements underscore the transformative impact of the SSTP in fostering the academic and research endeavors of surgical residents within the department. As Dr. Mullan assumes his role as the 2024 SSTP scholar, he joins a cohort of exceptional individuals dedicated to advancing the frontiers of science.

Join us in congratulating Dr. Clancy Mullan on this well-deserved honor and wishing him continued success in his pursuit of surgical excellence and scientific innovation.

Submitted by Elisabeth Reitman on April 26, 2024