Steven E Nissen MD, MACC is Chief Academic Officer for the Heart and Vascular Institute at the Cleveland Clinic, the Lewis and Patricia Dickey Chair in Cardiovascular Medicine and Professor of Medicine at the Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine at Case Western Reserve University, USA. From 2006 to 2019, he served as Chair of the Department of Cardiovascular Medicine at the Cleveland Clinic. In 2006–2007 he served as President of the American College of Cardiology.
His initial research focused on application of intravascular ultrasound imaging to the assessment of progression and regression of coronary atherosclerosis, conducting more than a dozen randomized controlled trials, most published in the New England Journal of Medicine or JAMA. More recently, he has served as study chair for large global cardiovascular outcomes trials, most studying lipid-modifying therapies. His contributions to scientific literature include nearly 600 journal articles and 60 book chapters. He is co-author of a book for patients with heart disease, Heart411, released by Crown Books on January 31, 2012.
Dr Nissen works closely with pharmaceutical companies on the development of new therapies for cardiovascular disease, but maintains a longstanding policy of requiring companies to donate all related honoraria directly to charity so that he receives neither income, nor a tax deduction.
He has also written extensively on the subject of drug safety. In 2001, he co-authored the first manuscript that raised concerns about the cardiovascular safety of rofecoxib, which was withdrawn from the market 3 years later. In 2007, he authored a manuscript that demonstrated that the widely used diabetes drug rosiglitazone raised the risk of myocardial infarction, eventually leading in 2010 to withdrawal of the drug in Europe and severe restrictions in the US.
Dr Nissen served as a member of the CardioRenal Advisory Panel of the US FDA for 5 years, and as Chairman in the final year of his membership. He continues to serve as an advisor to several FDA committees as a “Special Government Employee.” In July 2008, while serving as guest member of the Endocrine and Metabolism Advisory Panel, he recommended a new approach for approval of diabetes drugs, which was ultimately adopted by the Agency in December 2008.