Kilmer S. McCully received his A.B. degree magna cum laude (chemistry) from Harvard College in 1955 and his M.D. degree cum laude from Harvard Medical School in 1959. He was elected to Phi Beta Kappa at Harvard College and Alpha Omega Alpha at Harvard Medical School. During medical school, he studied cholesterol biosynthesis in the laboratory of Konrad Bloch at Harvard University and pregnenolone metabolism in the laboratory of Lewis Engel at Massachusetts General Hospital. Following his internship in internal medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital, he was appointed Research Associate in Biochemistry at National Institutes of Health in the laboratory of Giulio Cantoni, where he studied tRNA structure. He was awarded a post-doctoral fellowship by National Institutes of Health for one year as a Research Fellow in Medicine in the laboratory of Paul Zamecnik at Massachusetts General Hospital, where he studied tRNA function and protein synthesis by polyribosomes. In 1963 he won an American Cancer Society Faculty Research Award and spent one year at Glasgow University in the laboratory of Guido Pontecorvo, where he studied genetic recombination and amino acid metabolism in Aspergillus nidulans. After returning from Glasgow, he studied amino acid metabolism in the laboratory of James Watson at Harvard University for several months. During 1965-1968, he served as Clinical and Research Fellow in Pathology at Massachusetts General Hospital. During his pathology residency, he studied protein synthesis in organ cultures of human tumors.
Following his residency in pathology, Dr. McCully began his study of homocysteine and vascular disease in 1968 in the Pathology Department at Massachusetts General Hospital under Benjamin Castleman. He won a Career Development Award from National Institutes of Health from 1971-1976. He was appointed Associate Pathologist at Massachusetts General Hospital and Assistant Professor of Pathology at Harvard Medical School and the Harvard-Massachusetts Institute of Technology Program in Health Sciences and Technology. He was one of the three founders of the course in general pathology in the Harvard-MIT program. After leaving Harvard in 1979, he was appointed Visiting Professor of Laboratory Medicine at the University of Connecticut. In 1981 he was appointed Pathologist at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Providence and Associate Professor of Pathology at Brown University. In 1983 Brown University awarded him an M.A. ad eundum (hon). He was Pathologist and Chief of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Providence from 1981 until 2001. He is currently Chief of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, Director of the Boston Area Consolidated Laboratories at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in West Roxbury, Massachusetts, and Medical Director of the Network Consolidated Laboratories for Veterans Affairs Medical Centers in New England. He also serves as Associate Clinical Professor of Pathology at Harvard Medical School.
During his tenure at the Veterans Affairs Medical Centers in Providence and Boston, Dr. McCully continued his studies of homocysteine metabolism in arteriosclerosis, cancer and degenerative disease. He has published over 80 research articles in peer-reviewed journals in his field of investigation from 1961 until 2012. He has also published two monographs, several book chapters, and several reviews in medical journals, two books for the general reader and a book of his scientific memoirs. He currently holds seven U.S. Patents for anti-neoplastic and anti-atherogenic derivatives of homocysteine thiolactone.
In 1998 Dr. McCully was given the Linus Pauling Functional Medicine Award by the Institute for Functional Medicine and the Norman E. Clarke, Sr. Award by the American College for Advancement in Medicine. In 1999 he was given the Burton Kallman Scientific Achievement Award by the National Nutritional Foods Association and the Kynett Foundation Cardiology Award of Excellence by the College of Physicians of Philadelphia. In 2000 he received the International Integrative Medicine Award by the International Journal of Integrative Medicine, the Dinsdale Award by the Society for Scientific Exploration, the Benjamin Franklin Literary and Medical Society Award, and the Lifetime Achievement Award in Clinical Nutrition by the International and American Associations of Clinical Nutritionists. In 2000 Dr. McCully was honored by citation to the Twentieth Century Hall of Fame by Prevention Magazine. In 2001 he was given the Gallery of Heroes Award by Men’s Journal Magazine. Also in 2001 he was given a Commendation by the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Providence. In 2003 he was awarded the Integrity in Science Award of the Weston A. Price Foundation and the Edward Rhodes Stitt Award in Laboratory Medicine by the Association of Military Surgeons of the United States. His biography is currently listed in Marquis Who’s Who in America.