American Surgical Association Transactions

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1933 - 2019

Graeme L. Hammond, M.D., 1933-2019

Graeme Lord Hammond, MD, Professor Emeritus of Surgery at the Yale School of Medicine, was an internationally recognized surgeon-scientist in cardiac diseases.

Born in New York City on January 30, 1933, Dr. Hammond received his medical degree from McGill University after serving in the United States Army. He trained in surgery at the Massachusetts General Hospital that included a year in the research laboratory of Dr. Austen. He joined the Yale School of Medicine faculty as an assistant professor in 1969, was appointed associate professor in 1972, and rose to the rank of full professor in 1979. He served as interim chief of Cardiothoracic Surgery from 1986-1987. He retired from a surgical career and became emeritus professor in 2006; continuing as a senior research scientist until 2008.

At Yale, Dr. Hammond catalyzed numerous surgical innovations and carried out groundbreaking research through many collaborations. He was the first to perform coronary artery bypass grafting in the region. His early research focused on coronary blood flow and he was later interested in xenotransplantation. Highlights of his diverse accomplishments include defining molecular signals for initiating protein synthesis in organ hypertrophy and the suppression of major histocompatibility complex antigen expression by noncoding RNA. He was an established investigator of the American Heart Association and received funding for his research from the National Institutes of Health for a 30-year span.

During his productive career, Dr. Hammond received numerous awards and honors, was a member of many surgical societies, including the American Surgical Association, the New England Surgical Society, the American Association for Thoracic Surgery, and the Society of University Surgeons. Dr. Hammond had an international reputation and was invited as visiting professor throughout the country and abroad. He was an esteemed clinical trainer and mentor to generations of students, general surgery residents, and cardiothoracic surgical fellows, many of whom have become leaders in surgery. He was a member of the National Board of Medical examiners and he co-edited a standard textbook of thoracic and cardiovascular surgery.

Dr. Hammond was predeceased by his wife, Janet, and he is survived by his son, Christopher and daughter, Wendy.