Professor Jean-Pierre Pelletier was born on 15thJanuary, 1949 in Saint-Jean, Quebec, Canada. After receiving his M.D. from the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Montreal in Quebec in 1974, he completed residencies in internal medicine and rheumatology at Hôtel-Dieu Hospital, University of Montreal and Montreal General Hospital at McGill University (1974-1979), followed by two years as a research fellow in rheumatology at the University of Miami, Fl, USA. He joined the University of Montreal in Quebec in 1981 and became full Professor in 1992. He is currently Professor of Medicine and Head of the Arthritis Center at the University of Montreal, and Director, Osteoarthritis Research Unit, University of Montreal Hospital Research Center, Notre-Dame Hospital.
Professor Jean-Pierre Pelletier is a world renowned authority in the field of osteoarthritis research. His studies, jointly with Professor Johanne Martell-Pelletier, span about 30 years during which they performed high quality translational research in the area of non-arthroplasty management of degenerative joint disease. Their principal focus has been on understanding the mechanisms involved in articular tissue degeneration in order to identify new therapeutic strategies and targets for treating this disease. They investigated the combined role of inflammation, cytokines, growth factors and proteases in osteoarthritic tissues using non-invasive magnetic resonance imaging as a means of developing clinical evaluation based on quantitative structural changes of the joint tissue. These studies paved the way for developing potential drugs that modify or arrest the disease process and also made it possible to identify previously unknown risk factors of the disease.
In addition to the King Faisal International Prize for Medicine, Professor Jean-Pierre Pelletier received several other awards and prizes including: Rheumatology Prize of the International League of Associations for Rheumatology (ILAR), Distinguished Investigator Award of the Canadian Rheumatology Association, Personality of the Week, La Presse, Montreal, Scientific Award for Basic Research in Osteoarthritis from the European League Against Rheumatism, Leadership and Distinction in the Medical Field Award from the University of Montreal Hospital Center Foundation, International Carol-Nachman Award for Rheumatology and the International League of Associations for Rheumatology Prize. He is a Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Sciences, editor of the International Journal of Rheumatology, associate/guest editor of Osteoarthritis and Cartilage, section editor of Current Opinions in Rheumatology and Modern Therapeutics in Rheumatic Diseases, member of the advisory committee of the Japanese Journal of Rheumatology and editorial committee of La Clinician and editor of the book Osteoarthritis: Clinical and Experimental Aspects. Professor Pelletier held leading positions in various international organizations, societies and foundations. For instance, he is a founding member of the Global Arthritis Research Network, former President of the Osteoarthritis Research Society International, Chairman of the RDU Council of the Arthritis Society and President of the Examination Committee (Rheumatology) of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada.
Professor Jean-Pierre Pelletier is a prolific author, with 249 peer-reviewed papers, 29 books or book chapters, 37 reviews or editorial and 532 abstracts, in addition to 242 invited lectures.
Professors Jean Pelletier and Johanne Pelletier have contributed substantially to translational research in the field of osteoarthritis. Their original work has led to major discoveries in the pathophysiology of osteoarthritis, particularly joint catabolism and repair. These studies have paved the way to identification of therapeutic targets. In addition they develop an innovative technology for the quantitative assessment of changes and alteration in cartilage and other articular tissues.