Dr. Chester Brown is a medical geneticist and the St. Jude Chair of Excellence in Genetics at the University of Tennessee Health Center, Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee. He is also a professor of pediatrics, genetics, genomics, and informatics at the University of Tennessee. Brown has spent much of his career researching the genetic factors that influence body fat distribution, as well as how host genomic factors influence HIV and tuberculosis in African children.
He has also provided innovative training to African scientists working on similar projects. Dr. Brown hopes to educate the local Memphis, Tennessee community on the importance of genomics in addition to diversifying the research community.
Brown was a medical genetics fellow and postdoctoral research fellow at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas, from 1995 to 1997, before being recruited to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital in 2016 to help introduce medical outreach programs to the Memphis community.
He also finished his medical residency at Baylor College in 1995 after working as a pediatrics intern there the year before. Dr. Brown received his undergraduate degree in 1985 from Howard University, where he double majored in zoology and chemistry. He then continued his education at the University of Cincinnati, where he earned his medical degree and Ph.D. in 1992 and 1993, respectively.
Dr. Brown has over twenty years of clinical experience in medical genetics, and his research and scholarship efforts have been focused on general obesity, adipocyte biology, and the TGF-beta family, a large and ever-growing group of regulatory peptides. Dr. Brown, an active member of the Society for Pediatric Research and a research associate at the National Institutes of Health in the Cellular Aspects of Diabetes and Obesity study section, is interested in how genomics can be used to effectively diagnose and manage genetic disorders on a global scale.
Dr. Brown is also a co-investigator at the NIH-funded Collaborative African Genomic Network and Human and Health in Africa, where he contributes to research on HIV and HIV-TB in African children.
Dr. Brown has published over thirty articles in various science and medical journals during his long professional and academic career, and he has been recognized on numerous occasions for his groundbreaking work in medical genetics and pediatrics. Among his honors are the Houston Black MBA Association’s Leadership Empowerment Award for Science and Health in 2007 and the Community of Scholars National’s 1,000 Inspiring Black Scientists in America, which he received in January 2021.