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When Too Much Iron Is Bad:
Hemochromatosis, the Silent Blood Disease

Susan F. Leitman, M.D.
Acting Chief, Department of Transfusion Medicine
Warren G. Magnuson Clinical Center


Tuesday, October 21, 2003 • 7 pm
Masur Auditorium • NIH Clinical Center

Photo of Dr. Leitman

Dr. Susan Leitman's research interests focus on (1) how to make blood donations and blood component separation safer and (2) how to increase the yields of leukapheresis (white blood cell separation) and peripheral blood stem cell procedures. Through randomized, controlled clinical trials, she is discovering how plasma exchange, red-cell exchange, and other apheresis procedures can help patients with specific diseases—including the subject of tonight's lecture—hemochromatosis.

Born in Montreal, Canada, Dr. Leitman earned both her B.A. and M.D. degrees from Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island. Concentrating on the dual disciplines of hematology and oncology, she completed her internship and residency in medicine and her fellowship in hematology/oncology at Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania.

In 1983, Dr. Leitman joined the Clinical Center Blood Bank as a senior staff fellow, later becoming chief of the Blood Services Section of the Department of Transfusion Medicine. She is currently DTM's acting chief.

Dr. Leitman has received many honors and awards—including a Public Health Service Research Award, an Arthur S. Flemming Award, and an NIH Distinguished Clinical Teacher Award. A faculty instructor in DTM's Specialty in Blood Banking Training Program, she has also taught at Georgetown University Medical Center as a clinical associate professor.

In addition, Dr. Leitman has served on the Food and Drug Administration's Blood Products Advisory Committee, chaired the Hemapheresis Committee of the American Association of Blood Banks and the Donor and Patient Safety Monitoring Committee of the National Marrow Donor Program, and cochaired the Scientific Program Committee of the Mid-Atlantic Association of Blood Banks. She has been NMDP council president and is now vice chairman of the NMDP board of directors.

Dr. Leitman's professional service activities have also included membership on the editorial boards of the Journal of Clinical Apheresis and Transfusion as well as service since 1995 on the editorial board of the NIH Catalyst.

She has authored and coauthored 112 peer-reviewed articles, 121 abstracts, and 5 book chapters.

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