ERS COPD Research Awards 2005 sponsored by Boehringer Ingelheim
The two winners come from Spain and the UK
20 September 2005, Copenhagen/Denmark and Ingelheim/Germany, 20 September 2005 - The European Respiratory Society (ERS) is pleased to announce that Dr Borja Cosio, currently working in Hospital Son Dureta, Palma de Mallorca, and Thomas Wilkinson, Royal Free Hospital, London, are this year`s winners of the Society`s annual award for research in the field of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD).
The ERS COPD Research Award has been awarded since the year 2000 and recognises the work of young European ERS members active in pulmonology research. It is sponsored by Boehringer Ingelheim and consists of two sponsorships totalling 50,000 Euros to be used for scientific research projects in the field of COPD.
This year, the first prize of 30,000 Euros goes to Borja Cosio (MD) whose exploratory work in alveolar macrophages showed a marked reduction of histone deacetylase activity in smokers and an even further reduction of activity in patients with COPD. His research has lead to a bigger study to explore the relationship between decreased histone deacetylase activity and COPD severity, which has been published in the New England Journal of Medicine.
Dr Cosio graduated from Universidad Complutense Medical School, Madrid, and specialized in clinical respiratory training in Hospital Universitario 12 de Octubre, Madrid. He was awarded with a long-term ERS fellowship to study the effect of oxidative stress related to COPD. In 2003, Dr Cosio moved to Palma de Mallorca, where he is currently working with Dr Alvar Agusti. Their research is aimed to understand the pathobiology of COPD exacerbations.
The second prize of 20,000 Euros, goes to Thomas Wilkinson for his work in investigating the role of airway infection in the pathogenesis of COPD. He and his colleagues were the first to demonstrate a direct relationship between airway bacterial colonisation and FEV1 (Forced Expiratory Volume in first second) decline in lung function.
Dr Wilkinson graduated from Cambridge University and completed his clinical studies at St Bartholomew’s and the Royal London Hospital Medical School. His initial research training was with Professor Wedzicha and the East London COPD research group. He has recently moved with this group to University College, London, and is currently working as a clinical lecturer based at the Royal Free Hospital. His research interests are the role of acute and chronic airway infection in COPD, particularly with respect to disease progression and the pathogenesis of acute exacerbations.
“The ERS is delighted to receive so many applications at such a high standard this year and wishes to thank all applicants for their contributions. In particular, we congratulate Borja Cosio and Thomas Wilkinson for their excellent work and extend our thanks to Boehringer Ingelheim, a leader in the research and treatment of COPD, for making this award possible,” said Martin Muers, ERS Secretary General. “I would also like to take this opportunity to remind all our members that the ERS COPD Award is an ongoing initiative and we look forward to receiving many submissions from young researchers for next years award.”
European members of the ERS up to age 35 are eligible to apply for the award. The official online application form can be found on the ERS website on www.ersnet.org/copd-award. The deadline for applications is February 23, 2006. Selection of the successful candidates will be made by the Scientific Committee of the ERS.
Notes to Editors:
The European Respiratory Society
Founded in 1990, the European Respiratory Society (ERS) is a not-for-profit, international medical organisation with more than 7,000 members – scientists, doctors and allied health professionals, coming from over 100 countries. The Society’s mission is to alleviate suffering from respiratory disease and to promote lung health through research, knowledge sharing, medical and public education, and working with patient organisations.
Boehringer Ingelheim has for a long time been in the forefront of treatment and research of COPD with its inhaled anticholinergic bronchodilators, which are recommended in first-line maintenance therapy for the management of COPD by many guidelines. As COPD is underdiagnosed and undertreated, Boehringer Ingelheim has campaigned to raise awareness and understanding of COPD world-wide. It has widely supported COPD research, development and implementation of COPD guidelines, patient and medical education in COPD, public awareness campaigns for COPD etc. An important feature of these activities has been close partnership with healthcare organisations.
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