Bana Jabri, MD, PhD, Professor of Medicine, Pathology and Pediatrics, and Vice Chair for Basic Research for the Department of Medicine has been named as a 2017 recipient of the University of Chicago’s Llewellyn John and Harriet Manchester Quantrell Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Education. The Quantrell Awards are believed to be the nation’s oldest prize for undergraduate teaching. Presented annually since 1938, the awards reflect the College’s commitment to honoring inspiring teachers.
Dr. Jabri is one of the University of Chicago’s most visible and respected educators. Her teaching credentials are outstanding, reflecting her deep commitment to excellence in education at all levels. At the undergraduate level, Dr. Jabri serves as Chair of the Specialization in Immunology and has been course director formany years. She has been singled out by students “as the instructor and mentor who has been most influential during the course of their University of Chicago education”. She is also a superb lecturer at the graduate level. She is an outstanding mentor who has trained many successful undergraduate and graduates students, post-doctoral candidates and clinical fellows. Many of these students have gone on to further graduate work in science or to academic careers.
Dr. Jabri is a world leader in the study of celiac disease and mucosal immunology. She has achieved international stature for her ideas and seminal discoveries of the mechanisms underlying the development of complex inflammatory disorders such as celiac disease, inflammatory bowel disease and type-1 diabetes. She is one of the most talented investigators in the Department of Medicine, Division of Biological Sciences and the University of Chicago. She is an exceptional physician scientist, and her studies have elevated our understanding of celiac disease, IBD and host-pathogen interactions to new heights. Bana’s extensive scientific and clinical knowledge has led to new insights in determining what triggers the abnormal reaction to gluten in celiac disease. Her groundbreaking work includes the development of the first-ever mouse model to find a vaccine and cure for celiac disease. One of Dr. Jabri’s most recent discoveries (published last month in Science) implicated viruses in the development of autoimmune disorders such as celiac disease and type 1 diabetes, and further demonstrated the possibility that vaccines could one day be used to prevent these diseases.
Dr. Jabri has authored numerous high impact articles in peer-reviewed publications including Science and Nature on autoimmune diseases and mucosal immunology. She has also been awarded the coveted Warren Prize for Excellence in Celiac Disease Research—a first for anyone in the United States, was elected to the Association of American Physicians. Dr. Jabri’s devotion to research has led to many significant leadership roles in science at the University of Chicago i.e Director of Research of the University of Chicago Celiac Disease Center, the Co-director of the University of Chicago Digestive Disease Research Core Center.
Dr. Jabri is the fourth member of the Department of Medicine’s faculty to receive this award since 2005: Dorothy Hanck, PhD (2005); Matthew Brady, PhD (2007); and Ronald Cohen, MD (2010).