Elizabeth McNally MD PhD is the Elizabeth J. Ward Professor of Genetic Medicine at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago. Her research uses genetics to define pathways that mediate heart and muscle degeneration leading to cardiomyopathy, heart failure and skeletal myopathies. Dr. McNally received her undergraduate degree from Barnard College of Columbia University, majoring in Biology and Philosophy. She completed her MD and PhD degrees through the NIH supported Medical Scientist Training Program at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine. She trained in Internal Medicine and Cardiology at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital at Harvard Medical School and then was postdoctoral fellow in human genetics at Children’s Hospital in Boston. She was a faculty member at the University of Chicago from 1996 until 2014, when she joined Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine to lead the Center for Genetic Medicine.
Her laboratory developed the first genetically modified mouse model of muscular dystrophy and cardiomyopathy. Using quantitative trait locus mapping, her group identified a series of genetic modifiers of myopathy. These genetic signals are being used to develop novel therapies to treat these disorders. Her translational work was recognized by an award from the Burroughs Wellcome Foundation and as a recipient of a Distinguished Clinical Scientist Award from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation. She is a member of the Board of Directors for the Muscular Dystrophy Association and advises Parent Project Muscular Dystrophy. She is the current chair of the Basic Cardiovascular Sciences Council of the American Heart Association. She is a past president of the American Society for Clinical Investigation, current president of the Association of American Physicians. She is a member of the National Academy of Medicine and American Academy of Arts and Sciences. She is the founder of Ikaika Therapeutics.