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Dr. Maria Iandolo New

Year of Birth / Death

b. 1928

Medical School

University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine


New York

Career Path

Pediatric medicine: Endocrinology
Dr. Maria Iandolo New


Dr. Maria New was the first to describe dexamethasone-suppressible hyperaldosteronism, a form of low-renin hypertension.
Dr. Maria New identified a new form of hypertension, “apparent mineralcorticoid excess,” which has resulted in a new area of research to determine how gluticoscoritcoids and mineralcorticoids interact with receptors.


I was very anxious to help patients, because as a child I was very sick.


Over the past half century, Dr. Maria I. New has earned a reputation as one of the nation's leading pediatric endocrinologists. Her studies of congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH)—a deficiency in the adrenal system that causes gender ambiguity in females and precocious sexual development in males—has led to treatments to correct the disorder before the baby is born. Her groundbreaking identification of a new form of hypertension, "apparent mineralcorticoid excess," has resulted in a new area of receptor biology.

Maria New earned her undergraduate degree from Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, in 1950, and her M. D. from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine in Philadelphia, in 1954. She completed an internship in medicine at Bellevue Hospital (3rd Division) in New York, followed by a residency in pediatrics at the New York Hospital. From 1957 to 1958 she studied renal functioning on a fellowship at the Department of Pediatrics of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). She was a research pediatrician to the Diabetic Study Group of the Comprehensive Care Teaching Program at the New York Hospital-Cornell Medical Center from 1958 to 1961, and had a second NIH fellowship from 1961 to 1964, to study specific hormone production during childhood and adolescence.

After a series of faculty positions at Cornell University Medical College, Dr. New was named chair of the Department of Pediatrics at the Weill Medical College of Cornell University in 1980. She also has served as director of Pediatric Endocrinology for New York-Presbyterian: The University Hospital of Columbia and Cornell, and is a distinguished fellow of the Public Health Policy Advisory Board in Washington, D.C.

She has published more than 500 articles in a range of medical journals including the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism, the Journal of Pediatrics, and Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences U.S.A. Dr. New is on the editorial boards of International Pediatrics,, Journal of Endocrinologica Iranica, and the Journal of Women's Health, is the corresponding editor of the Journal of Steroid Biology and is an advisory board member of Pediatric Annals.

She has received numerous accolades for her efforts to improve the quality of life of those affected by endocrine dysfunction, including the 1994 Humanitarian Award from the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation, and elected membership in the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1996. In 1998 she received the MERIT (Mechanism to Extend Research in Time) Award of the U.S. Public Health Service, National Institute of Child Health and Development, and in 1999 was awarded an honorary degree in medicine from l'Universita' degli Studi di Brescia.

Question and Answer

What was my biggest obstacle?

Being a woman was an obstacle I needed to overcome. Paying for my education was also a challenge. My parents were not able to afford my tuition, so I sought help from a family friend. Ultimately, the friend paid for my schooling and forgave me all of the loans.

How do I make a difference?

I take great pleasure and honor in caring for children whose lives I have saved or change with treatment.

Who was my mentor?

Dr. Ralph Peterson was my mentor.

How has my career evolved over time?

I became a full tenured professor at Weill Cornell Medical College with an endowed chair. I was the chair of the Department of Pediatrics from 1980 to 2002. I am an active member of the National Academy of Sciences.