Dan Kastner, MD, PhD

National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI) of NIH

Dr. Kastner is Scientific Director of the NHGRI, where he oversees clinical studies conducted by faculty-level investigators and some 500 other professional staff members. He continues the quest for genes underlying human disease by the development and application of advanced gene mapping and sequencing technologies. The Program aims to use this information to deepen our understanding of basic biology, and to develop therapies based on new molecular targets. Prior to his appointment at the NHGRI, Dr. Kastner was Chief of the Laboratory of Clinical Investigation and Clinical Director of NIAMS, and Deputy Director for Intramural Clinical Research at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). His laboratory had a longstanding interest in human genetic disorders of inflammation. He led an international consortium that identified the gene causing familial Mediterranean fever (FMF) in 1997. And in 1999, Dr. Kastner’s lab discovered mutations in a TNF-receptor responsible for causing a dominantly inherited periodic fever syndrome similar to FMF, a discovery that has led to the successful use of anti-TNF agents in the disorder. Dr. Kastner’s team also established the association of STAT4 polymorphisms with several autoimmune diseases and is currently studying the genetics of Behçet’s disease. He is a member of the American College of Rheumatology, the American Society of Human Genetics and the American Society for Clinical Investigation. He is the recipient of the NIH Director's Award, the Paul Klemperer Award of the New York Academy of Medicine, the Lee C. Howley Prize for Research in Arthritis from the National Arthritis Foundation and the NIAMS Mentoring Award. Dr. Kastner is a member of the National Academy of Sciences.