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Program Speaker

Duane C. Eichler, PhD

Dr. Eichler is presently a Distinguished University Professor Emeritus in the Department of Molecular Medicine, Morsani College of Medicine at the University of South Florida. When he retired in June, 2012, Dr. Eichler was Professor and Vice Chair of Molecular Medicine, he held two joint appointments; one as Professor in the Department of Pediatrics, Division of Pediatric Endocrinology, Metabolism and Diabetes, and the other as Professor in the School of Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation Sciences.

He was also the Basic Science Director of the Signature Interdisciplinary Program in Cardiovascular Research at USF Health. He received his undergraduate training at San Jose State University in Chemistry with a concentration in Biochemistry, and graduated with Great Distinction. He received his Ph.D. from UCLA in Biological Chemistry followed by postdoctoral training at Stanford University, School of Medicine. 

In June, 1977, he joined the Department of Biochemistry (renamed Molecular Medicine), in the College of Medicine at the University of South Florida. Dr. Eichler is still active providing invited talks and consultations, and currently chair's The Villages Community Advisory Council with oversight of cooperative university related clinical research activities.

Dr. Eichler is a dedicated and gifted teacher and has been the recipient of numerous teaching awards, including the prestigious James Krivanek Award, awarded annually to an outstanding teacher at USF, and the Outstanding Preclinical Professor Award, awarded annually by students of the Morsani College of Medicine. He was the first recipient of the Outstanding Lifetime Educational Excellence Award for 2010 -2011. Dr. Eichler has mentored numerous high school students and teachers, undergraduate students, graduate students, and medical students. 

As a Course Director, Dr. Eichler was responsible for the development and implementation of several interdisciplinary courses for medical students (Molecular Biology & Human Genetics; Human Molecular Genetics & Biochemistry; Molecular, Cellular & Genetic Basis of Medicine; Molecular Medicine) taught jointly by faculty from several departments.

From 2003 to 2010 he served as Director of an interdisciplinary and integrated course for first-year Medical Students entitled Molecular Medicine. This course was highly rated by both students and participating faculty, and was attributed in large part to Dr. Eichler's exceptional commitment, leadership and attention to detail. He was an invited Member of the Biochemistry Test Committee (1988 - 1991), Molecular and Cell Biology Task Force (1992 - 1994) and the Step 1 Human Development Pool Review Committee (1996) for the National Board of Medical Examiners. 

Dr. Eichler has established an exemplary record in the area of service. He was the driving force behind the development of an active interdisciplinary Health Science Center Obesity Group. He organized a highly successful national Conference on Obesity and served as Director for seven years. The success of the Conference on Obesity also gained attention and support from the State of Florida, Department of Health, American Heart Association, and Tampa General Hospital. 

In addition, Dr. Eichler was actively involved in community outreach programs for the University and USF Health as a frequent featured speaker on Obesity, and in particular, Childhood Obesity for local community groups, local high schools and the USF Health Mini-Medical School (2001 and 2004). From 2011 to 2014, Dr. Eichler was a volunteer liaison between USF Health and The Villages of Florida, providing support for The Villages / USF Health Alliance, as well as promoting participation of The Villages Charter High School Science Fair winners in USF Health Research Day. Dr. Eichler currently chair's The Villages Community Advisory Council.