November 26, 1952


MBBS, Bangalore University (1976)
DPhil, Oxford University (1980)

Awards & Honours:

2024: Oxford University Honorary Degree Recipient

2023: Kairali Global Lifetime Achievement Prize for Researchers

See All Awards
Picture of Salim Yusuf

Pioneered global clinical trials for heart research

Portrait of Salim Yusuf

A tireless builder of global heart care capacity

The leading North American clinical trialist, Dr. Salim Yusuf’s epidemiologic work in more than 60 countries shows the majority of risks of both cardiovascular and cerebrovascular disease are attributable to the same few risk factors. His large-scale studies involving several hundreds of thousands of individuals in dozens of countries have changed the way some of the world’s most deadly health conditions are prevented, treated and managed.

Key Facts

 Initiated, along with Richard Peto and Peter Sleight, the concepts of large, simple trials and meta-analysis

Coordinated the ISIS trial which set the structure for future international collaborative work in cardiovascular disease and demonstrated the value of beta-blockers in myocardial infarction

Involved in the discovery of new treatments for heart disease including ACE inhibitors, dual antiplatelet, and novel antithrombotic agents

Explored the role of the environment, health policies and health systems in influencing cardiovascular disease mortality globally

Published more than 800 articles in refereed journals and was the second most cited researcher
in the world for 2011

Professional timeline

Impact on lives today

Dr. Yusuf’s influence on international researchers is perhaps one of his most enduring gifts. By involving researchers in collaborative networks, and by providing practical training in the conduct of productive research projects, he has helped establish a much deeper understanding of the key principles that underlie epidemiological research in an astounding number of research fellows who have benefited from his direct supervision. Through his research, training, and network-building, Dr. Yusuf has brought the world community closer to establishing global programs of heart disease prevention.

Picture of Salim Yusuf


  • Dr. Yusuf became the President of the World Heart Federation

    At the WHF, he initiated the Emerging Leaders Program in 100 countries with the aim of halving the CVD burden globally within a generation.

  • Salim Yusuf on stage receiving his award

    Salim Yusuf inducted into the Canadian Medical Hall of Fame

    Kingston, Ontario

  • Dr. Yusuf established the HOPE Peace Through Health Chair at McMaster University and initiated one of the first Peace through Health university courses in the world

    Beyond his medical contributions to his community, Dr. Yusuf is also an advocate for peace.

  • Served as a senior Scientist of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research for a term of five years

  • Dr. Yusuf became a founding member and was appointed to the Executive Council of the Heart Failure Society of America

  • Health Sciences Archives, McMaster University 325 x 230

    Dr. Yusuf moved to McMaster University, where he established an international program of research in cardiovascular disease and prevention, culminating in the creation of the Population Health Research Institute

    Heart & Vessels

    The work of this group has led to a better understanding of the risk factors for heart disease and strokes globally.

  • Dr. Yusuf moved to the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, USA

    He was a leader in their SOLV trial (establishing the value of ACE inhibitors in LV dysfunction) and DIG trial (clarifying the role of digitalis).

  • After completing his medical studies in Bangalore, Dr. Yusuf received a Rhodes Scholarship to study at Oxford

    At Oxford he completed his DPhil and also found time to represent St. John’s College in hockey.


An investigator, teacher, and role model; a leader in the development of health research policy.