Elizabeth Mellins Obituary

”’htmlObituary for Dr. Elizabeth “Betsy” Mellins”’html

Dr. Elizabeth “Betsy” Mellins, a renowned pediatric rheumatologist and immunologist, passed away on March 24, 2024, at the age of 72.

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A graduate of Harvard Medical School, Dr. Mellins held faculty positions at the University of Washington and the University of Pennsylvania. She was recruited to Stanford University in 1996 as an associate professor of pediatrics.

Dr. Mellins’ research focused on genetic variations of MHC II molecules and their contribution to childhood inflammatory diseases. Her groundbreaking work led to discoveries about diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, Still disease, and pediatric acute-onset neuropsychiatric syndrome.

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Dr. Mellins was a transformative thought leader in pediatric rheumatology. She founded the Childhood Arthritis and Rheumatology Research Alliance (CARRA) to promote research and establish a biorepository for the field.


Dr. Mellins was an exceptional mentor, guiding countless students, postdocs, and junior faculty. She was known for her compassion, pragmatism, and commitment to promoting opportunities for women in science.

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Dr. Mellins was a devoted wife to Dr. Paul M. Mendelman and a loving mother to Jeff and Lisa Mendelman. She cherished her grandchildren, Oscar and Aila.


Dr. Mellins’ contributions to pediatric rheumatology have left an enduring legacy. Her research has advanced understanding of childhood inflammatory diseases, and her mentorship has inspired a new generation of scientists and physicians. She will be greatly missed by her family, friends, and the medical community.