David J. Hackam, MD, PhD
Photo: David J. Hackam



Elected 2009

David Hackam is Professor of Surgery, Pediatrics and Cell Biology at Johns Hopkins University, and Pediatric Surgeon-in-Chief and co-director of the Johns Hopkins Children's Center. He is past president of the Society of University Surgeons and Chair of the Research Committee of the American Pediatric Surgery Association (term ends 2019). Dr. Hackam is known worldwide for his seminal research into the pathogenesis of necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC), a devastating disease that affects premature infants. His work has provided a “new” approach to understanding the causes of NEC, with a focus on the previously unrecognized role of the innate immune system in disease pathogenesis, which has led excitingly to the identification of a family of anti-NEC therapies, the lead compound of which was recently licensed for clinical development. Dr. Hackam has also recently identified mechanisms underlying the gut-brain axis in the newborn to explain the development of NEC-associated brain injury, which was recently featured on the cover of Sci Translational Medicine. Dr. Hackam is the PI on two RO1s, a T32 for the training of surgeon-scientists, and three large industry grants, which focus on understanding the pathogenesis and treatment of NEC. Dr. Hackam has authored over 150 peer-reviewed publications (H-index 58, 9572 citations), and his 2018 Mucosal Immunology article was the 4th most highly cited article for the entire year by that journal. Dr. Hackam is the inaugural Editor-in-chief of the world’s first textbook devoted to the pathogenesis and treatment of NEC, to be published by CRC Press in 2019.