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The Lupus Foundation of America Recognizes Top Researchers With Prestigious Evelyn V. Hess Award and Mary Betty Stevens Prize

Dr. Ellen M. Ginzler Honored With Hess Award; Dr. Diane Leigh Kamen Receives Stevens Prize for Contributions to Lupus Research

WASHINGTON, Nov. 12, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Lupus Foundation of America bestowed its top honors on two leading scientists for their exceptional achievements in lupus research, at its annual awards reception held tonight at the Newseum in Washington. Ellen M. Ginzler, M.D., M.P.H. was awarded the prestigious 2012 Evelyn V. Hess, M.D., M.A.C.P., M.A.C.R., Research Award, that the Lupus Foundation of America presents annually to a researcher who has made outstanding contributions to the field of lupus research, diagnosis, and treatment. Diane Leigh Kamen, M.D., M.S.C.R., was awarded the 2012 Mary Betty Stevens, M.D., Young Investigator Prize for her early contributions to the field.

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The reception was hosted by the Lupus Foundation of America's National Board of Directors. Dr. Ginzler is the Division Chief of Rheumatology at the State University of New York's Downstate Medical Center while Dr. Kamen is an Assistant Professor of Medicine in the Division of Rheumatology at the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC).

Dr. Ginzler is internationally known as an expert on lupus nephritis, which occurs when lupus causes inflammation in the kidneys, making them unable to properly remove waste from the blood or control the amount of fluids in the body.

As principal investigator of an Orphan Products Program grant awarded by the Food and Drug Administration to assess the efficacy and tolerability of two drug treatments for lupus nephritis, Dr. Ginzler headed the largest multicenter, investigator-initiated trial ever carried out at that time for lupus. The results, published as the lead article in the New England Journal of Medicine in 2005, have changed the paradigm for treating lupus nephritis. Dr. Ginzler is a Master of the American College of Rheumatology and a fellow of the American College of Physicians, and was a long-time member of the Board of Governors of the New York Chapter of the Arthritis Foundation.

The Lupus Foundation of America established the annual Hess award in 2005 to honor Dr. Hess for her outstanding contributions to lupus research over the course of her long career. The award is given annually to a clinical or basic researcher whose body of work has advanced understanding of the pathophysiology, etiology, epidemiology, diagnosis, or treatment of lupus.

The 2012 Mary Betty Stevens, M.D., Young Investigator Prize is awarded annually in recognition of exceptional achievements of an investigator in the early part of his or her career in lupus research, and as a tribute to Dr. Stevens' significant contributions to the field.

Dr. Kamen, this year's recipient, is a devoted researcher and clinician who has focused her career to date on understanding the natural history of autoimmune diseases, in particular lupus. She serves as the Clinical Director for the Lupus Clinical Trials Consortium at MUSC, is Chair of the Southern Section American Federation for Medical Research, and is a member of the Lupus Foundation of America's Medical-Scientific Advisory Council.

On the international level, Dr. Kamen is a member of the Systemic Lupus International Collaborating Clinics (SLICC). Her future interests include furthering the understanding of the pathogenic mechanisms responsible for lupus while working to improve  the quality of life for people living with this disease.

The LFA is the foremost national nonprofit health organization dedicated to finding the causes of and cure for lupus and providing support, services, and hope to all people affected by lupus. More information about lupus and our ongoing research efforts is available by visiting www.lupus.org.

SOURCE Lupus Foundation of America

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