Before joining the foundation, Yamada served as Chairman of Research and Development and was a member of the Board of Directors at GlaxoSmithKline. Prior to that, he was chairman of the Department of Internal Medicine at the University of Michigan Medical School and Physician-in-Chief at the University of Michigan Medical Center. Yamada is a past president of the American Gastroenterological Association and the Association of American Physicians, a master of the American College of Physicians, and a member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Science in the United States and the Academy of Medical Sciences in the United Kingdom.
DeLauro wants Yamada's appointment investigated because when he was with GSK nearly ten years ago -- which is yesterday in politics, Yamada complained to John Buse, a University of North Carolina doctor (and now head of the American Diabetes Association) after he said at a 1999 medical conference that Avandia could cause heart attacks. Buse told Yamada to knock it off after Yamada made a phone call to Buse's boss, who Yamada calls "an old friend, so I felt comfortable calling him to probe informally about his opinion of Dr. Buse."