Dr. Suzanne C. Fitzpatrick’s expertise in alternative toxicological methods and work to improve animal welfare within the field of toxicology have earned her the 2019 SOT Enhancement of Animal Welfare Award.
Dr. Fitzpatrick received her PhD in anatomy from Georgetown University and was a postdoctoral fellow at Georgetown University Medical Center’s Department of Physiology and Biophysics. She then joined the US Food and Drug Administration (US FDA) as a customer safety officer in the Center for Veterinary Medicine’s Office of Human Food Safety. She has held several leadership positions within the US FDA Office of New Animal Drug Evaluation. She currently serves as the senior advisor for toxicology at the Office of the Center Director within the US FDA Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition. In addition, she is an adjunct professor at Johns Hopkins University, where she also has served on the Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing Advisory Board since 2001.
Dr. Fitzpatrick’s work is centered on understanding the impact of alternative models of toxicology and using such models to better predict the human condition. She studies methods that employ the 3Rs principle of animal welfare, and her process results in new levels of knowledge by combining basic research and clinical science. Dr. Fitzpatrick was heavily involved in the US FDA Predictive Toxicology Roadmap and is the US FDA lead of the Tox21 Interagency Steering Committee. She also participates in numerous groups investigating alternative models. For example, she chairs the Interagency Coordinating Committee on the Validation of Alternative Methods Work Group on Alternatives for Reproductive/Developmental Toxicity.
Dr. Fitzpatrick is highly regarded in the toxicology field, as highlighted by the more than 100 invited presentations she has given. Committed to raising awareness about food safety, toxicology, and alternative methods, she has planned more than 80 workshops and courses on these subjects. She has received many recognitions for her efforts, including the NIH Director’s Award in 2008. She is an SOT member, serving as the US FDA liaison, and is highly involved in the SOT FDA Colloquium Committee. She also was President of the SOT In Vitro and Alternative Methods Specialty Section from 2013–2014.