NEW YORK, March 24, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Alliance for Lupus Research (ALR), Lupus Foundation of America and Lupus Research Institute (LRI) join together for the fourth year to provide established researchers an opportunity to advance important scientific discoveries in lupus research. The $200,000 Lupus Insight Prize recognizes a major, novel insight and/or discovery with the promise of changing thinking about lupus as well as a high likelihood of generating further advances in the diagnosis and treatment of the disease.
Affecting an estimated 1.5 million Americans, lupus is an unpredictable, devastating chronic autoimmune disease in which the body's immune system turns on itself to attack healthy organs and tissue.
Nominations are due by April 22, 2016 at 5 p.m. ET. The 2016 Prize will be awarded by the three organizations at the Federation of Clinical Immunology Societies (FOCIS) annual meeting in Boston this June.
"The Lupus Insight Prize was designed to recognize a significant scientific discovery or achievement in an area with potential relevance to lupus and to support extension of that research, with the goal of achieving important advances in our understanding, and ultimately treatment, of patients with lupus," noted Mary K. Crow, M.D., Chair, ALR Scientific Advisory Board, Physician-in-Chief and Chair, Department of Medicine, The Hospital for Special Surgery. "The prize is also meant to shine a light on lupus and lupus research - to raise the visibility of this important disease. The awarding of the prize at a special session at the annual FOCIS meeting has become a highlight of the meeting and provides a forum for discussion of research advances."
"Lupus is a complex disease that is hard to understand and a challenge to treat," explains Gary S. Gilkeson, M.D., Chair, Lupus Foundation of America Medical-Scientific Advisory Council and Associate Dean for Faculty Affairs and Faculty Development, Medical University of South Carolina. "Ongoing research is critical to advancing our understanding of lupus and finding new ways to treat the disease. We are proud to collaborate to bring opportunities to lupus research at a time when funding is scarce."
As a past Lupus Insight Prize recipient Mark Shlomchik, MD, PhD, LRI Scientific Advisory Board Member and Professor and Chair, Department of Immunology, University of Pittsburgh commented, "This prize, in addition to recognizing my past contributions to lupus-related research, allowed me to get into completely new areas of lupus pathogenesis research. These are studies that I could never have started without the Lupus Insight Prize as they were too exploratory and 'risky' to be funded by traditional means."
The 2016 Lupus Insight Prize recipient will be awarded $200,000 to support research dedicated to furthering understanding of the genetic, environmental, molecular, immunologic or cellular aspects of lupus or its treatment.
Nominations are open to investigators of any age or rank affiliated with an academic, biomedical, research or government institution in the United States. Nominations will not be accepted for investigators working in the biotechnology or pharmaceutical industries. Additionally, nominees may not already possess a grant award to pursue the aims described in the Research Narrative. Co-investigators or teams of investigators are not eligible for the Lupus Insight Prize.
Lupus Insight Prize nominations will be reviewed by members of the independent Selection Committee, which is comprised of leading lupus scientific leaders from across the country and representatives of the three funding lupus organizations. The Selection Committee will review nominations and award the Prize based on several criteria, including academic achievements, creativity, insight, and potential for future advances that will improve the lives of people with lupus.
Full instructions on how to submit a nomination for the Lupus Insight Prize and the complete guidelines are available at LupusInsightPrize.org. The full application must be submitted no later than April 22, 2016 at 5 p.m. ET.
The Prize recipient will be announced and honored publicly at a ceremony in June during the FOCIS 2016 Annual Meeting in Boston, MA. At the ceremony, the award recipient will share details about his or her lupus research and future plans. Details about the ceremony and reception honoring the Prize recipient will be posted to LupusInsightPrize.org in the coming months.
Lupus is a chronic autoimmune disease that causes inflammation and tissue damage to any organ system in the body. The health effects of lupus include heart attacks, strokes, seizures, organ failure and possible death. An estimated 1.5 million Americans and at least five million people worldwide have a form of lupus.
About the Funding Organizations
For more information about the Alliance for Lupus Research, visit lupusresearch.org.
For more information about the Lupus Foundation of America, visit lupus.org.
For more information about the Lupus Research Institute, visit lupusresearchinstitute.org.
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SOURCE Lupus Research Institute