David Hafler, MD.
Dr. Hafler is the Gilbert H. Glaser Professor and Chairman Department of Neurology, Yale School of Medicine and is the Neurologist-in-Chief of the Yale-New Haven Hospital. He graduated magna cum laude in 1974 from Emory University with combined B.S. and M.Sc. degrees in biochemistry, and the University of Miami School of Medicine in 1978. He then completed his internship in internal medicine at Johns Hopkins followed by a neurology residency at Cornell Medical Center-New York Hospital in New York. Dr. Hafler received training in immunology at the Rockefeller University then at Harvard where he joined the faculty in 1984 where he was the incumbent of the Breakstone Professorship of Neurology at Harvard, an Executive Director of the Program in Immunology at Harvard Medical School and on the faculty of the Harvard-MIT Health Science and Technology program. He was a founding Associated Member of the Broad Institute at MIT. In 2009 he move to Yale as the Chair of the Department of Neurology.
Dr. Hafler is a clinical scientist with a research interest in understanding the mechanism of multiple sclerosis with over 300 publications in the field of MS, autoimmunity and immunology. His laboratory has defined immunodominant epitopes of autoantigens, and has developed new technologies to measure both functionality and frequency of autoreactive T cells. More recently, Dr. Hafler has focused on broadly characterizing the molecular pathogenesis of the disease, both at the DNA, mRNA, and proteomic level. Dr. Hafler is a founding member of the International MS Genetic Consortium, a group recently formed to define the genetic causes of MS including scientists from University of Cambridge and University of California, San Francisco.
Dr. Hafler has been elected to membership in the American Society of Clinical Investigation, The American Neurological Association, the Alpha Omega Society, and was a Harvey Weaver Scholar of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. He is currently a member of the editorial boards for Journal of Clinical Investigation and the Journal of Experimental Medicine, and is co-founder of the Federation of Clinical Immunology Societies. He received the 1st National Multiple Sclerosis five year Collaborative Center Award for tackling the MS genetic effort. Hafler leads the NIH Autoimmunity Prevention Center Grant at Yale, and is a Jacob Javits Merit Award Recipient from the NIH. He has won many awards including last year’s Dystel Prize for MS research from the American Academy of Neurology and National MS Society.