Professor Mandy MacLean, a BBSRC-funded scientist at the University of Glasgow, is the first woman and the first scientist working on research to understand basic mechanisms to receive the prestigious Estelle Grover Lecture Award from the American Thoracic Society for her research into the life-threatening condition, pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH).
PAH has no cure and is fatal.
award lecture tonight (5 September) at the 2008 Grover Conference in Colorado (USA) Professor MacLean
revealed findings that explain how PAH develops, how the chemical serotonin is involved and why recreational amphetamines can bring on this dangerous condition and how better drugs could be designed to treat what is invariably a fatal disease.
This lecture represents a body of work currently funded by BBSRC
(the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council) along with, among others, the Medical Research Council
and the British Heart Foundation
The Estelle Grover Lecture Award is usually awarded to clinical researchers and Professor MacLean is the first scientist working on research to understand basic mechanisms ever to have had their contribution to the understanding of blood circulation around the lungs recognised in this way.
said: "I am truly honoured to give the 2008 Estelle Grover lecture.
This is Professor MacLean's
research examines the effects of several so-called 'diet drugs' that were banned because of their tendency to induce PAH in patients.
has used mouse models to show that the nerve chemical serotonin plays a pivotal role in the development of pulmonary hypertension and that these particular appetite suppressants lead to constriction of the blood vessels around the lungs because they activate serotonin.
We would like to congratulate Professor MacLean
award and are delighted to see her
take this fantastic opportunity to showcase the value of basic science for understanding a disease that has proved to be very difficult to deal with in the clinic."
Professor Peter Weissberg, Medical Director, BHF said: "We are delighted that Professor MacLean has received this honour.
funds a considerable amount of research into this deadly disease and are very pleased that the American Thoracic Society
has recognised Prof MacLean's
contribution to this vital field."
was selected as the 2008 awardee on the basis of her
outstanding work over many years concerning the serotonin hypothesis of pulmonary hypertension, and the critical role that serotonin seems to play in both idiopathic pulmonary hypertension and pulmonary hypertension secondary to chronic hypoxic lung disease.
Professor Mandy MacLean, University of Glasgow
tel: 0141 330 4768