Dr. Dunaif received her MD degree in 1977 from Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. She trained in internal medicine at the Presbyterian Hospital in New York and in endocrinology and metabolism at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. She held a ten-year joint appointment in Medicine and in Obstetrics and Gynecology at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine, rising to the rank of Associate Professor. Dr. Dunaif was recruited to Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine in 1992 as Professor of Medicine and Head, Section of Diabetes and Metabolism in the Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism. She was the founding Program Director of their NIH General Clinical Research Center.
Dr. Dunaif was appointed as the first Director of Women’s Health at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Chief of the newly established Division of Women’s Health in the Departments of Medicine and Obstetrics and Gynecology in 1997. In the fall of 1998, she was chosen to lead the Harvard Medical School National Center of Excellence in Women’s Health, established in part through a contract from the U.S. Public Health Service’s Office on Women’s Health. In 2001, Dr. Dunaif was recruited to Northwestern University to be the Charles F. Kettering Professor of Medicine and Chief of the Division of Endocrinology, Metabolism and Molecular Medicine.
Dr. Dunaif’s research has focused on reproductive physiology and metabolism in women. She is an internationally recognized expert on polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), the most common endocrine disorder in premenopausal women. Currently, she is leading a study aimed at identifying genes conferring susceptibility to PCOS and diabetes. She has more than 100 scientific publications, including a highly regarded textbook on PCOS. She is a former associate editor of the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism. Dr. Dunaif received the Rhone-Poulenc Rorer Clinical Investigator Award in 1996, The Endocrine Society’s highest award for clinical investigation. She has received many other awards and honors, including a Woman of Achievement Award from the Big Sisters Association of Greater Boston and has been elected to the American Society for Clinical Investigation and the Association of American Physicians. She is Director of the Northwestern University Specialized Center of Research (SCOR) on Sex and Gender Factors Affecting Women’s Health.