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Richard Pierson

Faculty Affiliate, Bioethics; Professor of Clinical Medicine, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons

Richard N. Pierson Jr., M.D. a professor of clinical medicine, trained in internal medicine, nuclear medicine, and radiation biology. He was one of the founders of the ethics committee at St. Luke's Roosevelt Hospital.

Dr. Pierson conducts research at the Nutrition Research Center at St. Luke's Hospital. His research, primarily for the National Institutes of Health, applies existing and newly developed physical and chemical methods to the study of body composition, using the in-vivo neutron activation analysis methods developed at the Brookhaven National Laboratory. Establishing normal values for body composition in over 15,000 normal subjects has served clinical programs in AIDS, osteoporosis, obesity, renal disease, and other chronic diseases.

Dr. Pierson started the division of nuclear medicine at St. Luke's Hospital. He opened the residency program in nuclear medicine in 1972, and directed the laboratory and residency program until 1989, resigning to devote full time to research in the Nutrition Research Center.

An early proponent of medical peer review, Dr. Pierson chaired the American Medical Peer Review Research Organization from 1981 to 1987, and founded the research arm of the American Medical Peer Review Organization. Seeing continuing education as an element of peer review, he was president of the Alliance for Continuing Medical Education, from 1987 to 1989, and has worked with remedial education programs in New York and nationally, serving on the Board of Professional Medical Conduct in New York. He was president of the New York County Medical Society in 1978 and 1979, and was a member of the House of Delegates of the AMA, from 1978 to 1998.


Medical Specialty: Internal Medicine and Nuclear Medicine
Specializations/Clinical Interests: Body Composition Academic