CVMBS Distinguished Professor Selected As AAAS Fellow

Story by Aubrey Bloom, CVMBS Communications

Dr. Stephen Safe in his lab
Dr. Stephen Safe

Dr. Stephen Safe, a distinguished professor of toxicology in the Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences’ (CVMBS) Department of Veterinary Physiology and Pharmacology (VTPP), was recently named a fellow by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the world’s largest general scientific society.

He will be inducted during the association’s annual meeting this week in Philadelphia.

Safe was chosen for the honor for his distinguished contributions to the scientific knowledge used to advance the safe use of chemicals in commerce and the development of more effective and safe pharmaceuticals, according to the AAAS announcement.

“Being inducted as an AAAS Fellow is a tremendous achievement, and we are extremely proud of Dr. Safe and the meaningful research that he continues to do,” said Dr. John August, CVMBS dean. “Dr. Safe is an exceptional scientist and mentor, and his commitment to innovation and scientific discovery make him truly deserving of this recognition. 

“In addition, his leadership of the next generation of researchers ensures his work will continue to have a measurable impact on the medical field and pharmaceutical industry for decades to come.”

Safe’s research has focused on creating medical compounds to treat or cure cancers, some of which have been licensed by pharmaceutical companies.

In the search for cures and treatments, Safe’s research has often led him into unexpected new areas. He attributes much of his success to being willing to follow those paths as they unfolded, even if they weren’t his area of expertise at the start.

As a result of this open-minded approach, he has more than a dozen patents or patent applications on these compounds and their applications. One of these cancer-treating compounds was also found to be effective for treating endometriosis, a common gynecological condition.

In addition, through his lab, the Molecular & Cellular Oncology Laboratory, Safe has mentored almost 100 Ph.D. students, 18 Master of Science graduate students, and more than 20 postdoctoral fellows and has been recognized for his skills in guiding his students in their own search for treatments and cures.

He also has previously been honored by, and lectured at, universities across the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom and has received numerous awards for research, teaching, and service. Most recently he was selected as a 2019 Merit Award winner by the Society of Toxicology, and in 2020 he was recognized for his mentorship with a Distinguished Achievement Award by the Association of Former Students at Texas A&M. Overall his work has been cited more than 87,000 times with an h-index of 138.

Safe received his undergraduate and Master of Science degrees at Queen’s University in Canada, received his Ph.D. from Oxford University, and completed his postdoctoral work at Harvard before joining Texas A&M in 1981.

Aggie Fellows

Dr. Stephen Safe’s 2021 AAAS Fellows classmates include 563 scientists, engineers, and innovators spanning 24 scientific disciplines, including six others from Texas A&M.

“This is a significant milestone, congratulations to each for receiving this high honor,” Interim Vice President for Research Jack G. Baldauf said.


For more information about the Texas A&M School of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences, please visit our website at or join us on FacebookInstagram, and Twitter.

Contact Information: Jennifer Gauntt, Director of VMBS Communications, Texas A&M School of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences;; 979-862-4216

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