Steven Nissen, MD, is the Chairman of the Robert and Suzanne Tomsich Department of Cardiovascular Medicine located on the main campus of Cleveland Clinic. He was appointed in 2006. Prior to this, he served nine years as Vice-Chairman of the Department of Cardiology and five years as Medical Director of the Cleveland Clinic Cardiovascular Coordinating Center (C5), an organization that directs multicenter clinical trials.
Dr. Nissen’s research during the last two decades has focused on the application of intravascular ultrasound (IVUS) imaging for the assessment of progression and regression of coronary atherosclerosis. He has served as International Principal Investigator for several large IVUS multi-center atherosclerosis trials.
Contributions to scientific literature include more than 350 journal articles and 60 book chapters including many manuscripts in NEJM and JAMA. In recent years, he has also written on the subject of drug safety and was the author of manuscripts highlighting concerns about the COX-2 inhibitors (Vioxx™), muraglitazar and rosiglitazone (Avandia™).
Other contributions include current service as editor of Current Cardiology Report, and senior consulting editor to the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.
Dr. Nissen's national positions include:
One-year term as president of the American College of Cardiology (ACC) from March 2006 to March 2007. He served on the ACC Executive Committee 2004-2008. He served 10 years as a member of Board of Trustees of the ACC. He has served several terms on the Program Committee for ACC Annual Scientific Sessions.
Dr. Nissen served as a member of the CardioRenal Advisory Panel of Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for five years, and as chair of the final year of his membership. He continues to serve as a periodic advisor to several FDA committees as a Special Government Employee.
Dr. Nissen is a frequent lecturer before national and international meetings. He has served as visiting professor, or provided Grand Rounds, at nearly 100 institutions.
As a physician/scientist, Dr. Nissen consults for many pharmaceutical companies on the development of new therapies for cardiovascular disease, but maintains his longstanding personal policy of requiring companies to donate all related honoraria directly to charity.
Dr. Nissen is also known for his role in public policy discussions, particularly in the area of drug safety. He has testified in both the Senate and the House of Representatives on this issue as well as the need to reform the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Dr. Nissen was selected for the Outstanding Scientist Award by the Cleveland Clinic in 2004. He received the Outstanding Teacher Award, presented by the Fellows of Cardiovascular Medicine, on three occasions.
Dr. Nissen also received Award for Outstanding Contributions to Cardiovascular Research from the Gill Heart Institute of the University of Kentucky in 2004.
In 2007, Dr. Steven Nissen was named by TIME Magazine as "one of the 100 most influential people in the world".
Dr. Nissen was also named in 2007 by SmartMoney Magazine as one of the "country’s 30 most powerful forces in business and finance."
Dr. Nissen earned his medical degree from the University of Michigan School of Medicine in Ann Arbor. He completed Internal Medicine internship and residency at the University of California, Davis in Sacramento, and Cardiology Fellowship at the University of Kentucky Medical Center in Lexington. Dr. Nissen's early career years were spent at the University of Kentucky College of Medicine achieving a rank of Associate Professor.