Jennifer Lawton has been appointed professor and chief of the Johns Hopkins Division of Cardiac Surgery. She is also director of the Cardiac Surgery Research Laboratory and will help lead the cardiothoracic fellowship training program in 2017.
Supporting American Heart Association (AHA) efforts, Lawton has spent much of her career raising awareness about heart disease as the leading cause of death for adult women in the United States.
A specialist in adult cardiac surgery, Lawton also performs innovative procedures, such as minimally invasive valve and off-pump coronary artery surgery (a variation of coronary artery bypass graft surgery without the use of the heart-lung machine), that have demonstrated better postoperative results for women.
She has many clinical research interests, including gender differences in cardiac surgery. As a funded surgeon-scientist, Lawton studies protection of the heart muscle by examining the responses of isolated heart cells in response to stress and the role of a cardioprotective ion channel in the heart.
Her leadership roles have included chair of the AHA’s basic science surgery study section and vice chair of the Accreditation Council for the Graduate Medical Education Thoracic Residency Review Committee, among others.
Lawton earned her M.D. from Hahnemann Medical College. She went on to complete her surgical residency at the Medical College of Virginia and a cardiothoracic surgery fellowship at Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center. Before joining Johns Hopkins, Lawton was at Washington University for 15 years.