Lung Researchers Earn Top Honors from American Thoracic Society

(May 24, 2010)

Robert A. Wise, M.D, the Director of the American Lung Association's Asthma Clinical Research Centers (ACRC) Data Coordinating Center, received the American Thoracic Society's 2010 Distinguished Achievement Award at the society's International Conference in New Orleans on May 16, for his outstanding contributions to fighting respiratory disease through research, education, patient care, and advocacy.

Robert A. Wise, MD
Robert A. Wise, M.D.
The ACRC Network is the nation's largest not-for-profit network of clinical research centers dedicated to asthma research, and consists of 18 asthma research centers throughout the country, conducting large clinical trials that have a direct impact on patient care and asthma treatment. Since its inception in 1999, the network has completed seven trials leading to 26 published papers in peer-review journals and an additional 37 papers in press or being prepared.  The network has also secured approximately $15.3 million in government funding and 9.3 million in industry and foundation support, in addition to $28 million in American Lung Association support.

"The ACRC Network has accomplished a great deal and has already contributed crucial knowledge in the quest to help people with asthma," said Mary H. Partridge, American Lung Association National Board Chair.  "As Director of the ACRC Data Coordinating Center for the past ten years, Dr. Wise has been instrumental in projecting the ACRC into an extremely successful network."

"Dr. Wise is an exemplar clinical investigator, specializing in the difficult but critical 'gold standard' of patient-oriented research, the Randomized Controlled Trial," said Norman H. Edelman, M.D., American Lung Association Chief Medical Officer.  "His contributions to the American Lung Association research program as the director of the data coordinating center for the ACRC have been central to the great success of this program as manifest by extensive NIH support and publication of research results in major journals such as the New England Journal of Medicine. There is no doubt that the well being of many asthma patients has been substantially improved by the findings of these scientific studies."

Two other American Lung Association ACRC researchers also received awards from the Society, including Warren R. Summer, M.D., who received the Outstanding Educator Award.  Dr. Summer is the lead primary investigator of the American Lung Association's ACRC Center at Louisiana State University.  The Society also presented a Recognition Award for Scientific Accomplishment to Sally E. Wenzel, M.D., a former lead primary investigator of the American Lung Association's ACRC Center at National Jewish.