José Manautou Named to IUTOX Leadership Role

UConn School of Pharmacy professor set to assume leadership role in international toxicology organization at a critical time in science education.

Jose Manautou with student in lab

Student with Professor José Manautou in the lab. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)

José Manautou, Professor of Toxicology in the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences

José Manautou, Interim Department Head of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Assistant Dean for Graduate Education and Research, and Professor of Toxicology, was named president-elect of the International Union of Toxicology (IUTOX) at the organization’s recent meeting in Hawaii. He will assume the presidency in 2022 at the Union’s next triennial meeting in Maastricht, The Netherlands.

Manautou is the third person from the UConn School of Pharmacy to assume prominence leading a toxicology scientific organization. He joins Steven Cohen, former Professor of Toxicology and Director of the Center for Biochemical Toxicology, and John Morris, Board of Trustees Distinguished Professor and former head of the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences and Assistant Dean for Research, who  served as Society of Toxicology presidents. Manautou is the first to lead the International Union of Toxicology.

The IUTOX was founded in 1980 and currently has 63 regional and national society members on six continents representing 25,000 toxicologists worldwide. Its membership is comprised of toxicologists from industry, academia, and government who share a vision of fostering international scientific cooperation for the global acquisition and utilization of knowledge in toxicology for improvement of the health of humans and their environment.

Upon learning election results, Manautou said, “With this election as President-Elect of the IUTOX comes great recognition, but also an immense responsibility to make a mark in the global toxicology community.  The timing of this election is also critical since the globalization of science and the exchange and training of scientists across borders is facing new challenges.

“My involvement with the Society of Toxicology (SOT) began during my years as a postdoctoral fellow here at UConn. Both UConn and SOT were the two major influences during my formative years as junior academician and toxicology researcher.  Over the years, I have had the opportunity to grow as a scientist and educator and to travel the globe disseminating my science and the goodwill of the toxicology community in the USA and my home institution, UConn in many counties.  These experiences have helped me create a truly global network of colleagues, collaborators, and friends in my discipline.”

Current president of the Society of Toxicology, Ronald N. Hines, MS, PhD, ATS had this to say about Manautou, “Throughout his career, José has strived to be an ambassador for the discipline of toxicology. He has been an active member of the Society of Toxicology, participating in and leading many efforts for global outreach. In particular, he has led efforts to reach out to developing countries and to under-represented groups.”

Hines enumerated on some of the many awards Manautou has received during his career, including the Astra Zeneca traveling lectureship in 2008 and the Hispanic Organization of Toxicologists Distinguished Toxicologist Award in 2017.

He continued, “Of course, key to José’s success has been his reputation for outstanding science which I am personally aware of because of several visits I have made to the University of Connecticut, and our past collaborative efforts. Thus, speaking for the Society of Toxicology, as well as personally, we were pleased and proud of José’s election to the presidency of the International Union of Toxicology and look forward to working closely with him as he takes on this new and important global leadership role.”

José Manautou with two past presidents of the Society of Toxicology – Leigh-Ann Burns Nass from Gilead Sciences and Patricia Ganey from Michigan State University. Both were delegates from the Society of Toxicology to the IUTOX General Assembly.

Also speaking of Manautou’s election, Clarissa Russell, Senior Vice President and Executive Director of Association Innovation and Management, Inc. and executive director of Toxicology Forum said, “IUTOX is the voice of toxicology on the global stage; the organization seeks to increase the knowledge base of toxicological issues facing humankind and to extend this knowledge to developing societies and nations. José has embodied the IUTOX mission throughout his professional career. He has served as a mentor for non-US toxicologists. He regularly travels abroad to lecture on both global and local toxicological issues. Through his travels, he has made many contacts that will be advantageous for his leadership role on the IUTOX Board of Directors. Through is dedication and service to science, he has shown that one person can make a difference.”

Manautou also serves on the National Advisory Environmental Health Sciences Council (NAEHSC), part of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), and is co-editor-in-chief of the journal Current Opinion in Toxicology (COT). He currently serves on the editorial boards of the journals of Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology, Toxicological Sciences, Drug Metabolism Reviews, AIMS Medical Sciences, Toxicology in Vitro, BBA Molecular Basis of Disease and the World Journal of Gastrointestinal Pathophysiology.