CONTACT: DAVE PEDERSEN
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 335-8032; fax(319) 335-8034
Release: Nov. 14, 2000
Dixon receives $1.36 million NIH grant for hemodialysis research
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and
Kidney Diseases of the National Institutes of Health has awarded University
of Iowa Health Care researchers a new grant to participate as one of five
clinical centers involved in the Hemodialysis Vascular Access Clinical Trials
The five-year, $1.36 million dollar award began Sept. 29. The UI and affiliated
regional area hemodialysis units are studying methods of slowing or preventing
hemodialysis vascular access failure. Vascular access failure is a major cause
of morbidity and accounts for nearly $1 billion per year, or 20 percent, of
the cost for patients on chronic hemodialysis.
Bradley S. Dixon, M.D., UI associate professor of internal medicine and
principal investigator, will direct the participation of the Eastern Iowa-Western
Illinois Vascular Access Consortium (EIWIVAC) in the national trial. Other
senior investigators in the EIWIVAC include Thomas Bainbridge, M.D. (Mount
Pleasant, Iowa), Prem K. G. Chandran, M.D. (Des Moines, Iowa), Frank S. Darras,
M.D. (Peoria, Ill.), Timothy A. Pflederer, M.D. (Peoria, Ill.), Michael J.
Slavin, M.D. (Waterloo, Iowa) and Anne L. Voigts, M.D. (Cedar Rapids, Iowa).
Lawrence G Hunsicker, M.D., UI professor of internal medicine, will serve
as a co-investigator, and Raymond J. Hohl, M.D., UI associate professor of
internal medicine and director of the department's hematology and oncology
division, will serve as a consultant.
The hemodialysis vascular access is a surgical connection between artery
and vein that allows blood to be removed from the patient for hemodialysis.
The vascular access thus serves as the lifeline for the hemodialysis patient.
However, access failure is a frequent occurrence. The primary cause of the
access failure is the buildup of tissue in the venous side of the access that
leads to slow blood flow and clotting. The purpose of the Hemodialysis Vascular
Access Clinical Trials Consortium is to study new approaches to inhibit the
buildup of venous tissue that leads to clotting of the access. Several of
the drugs to be studied will target inhibition of vascular smooth muscle cell
proliferation that leads to the venous stenosis.
"This is an extremely vexing problem for dialysis patients and their
caregivers," Dixon said. "This grant will allow us to study new
ways to prevent this problem. I'm especially excited that our clinical center
brings together a group of talented and dedicated nephrologists from the surrounding
region to work together. We are also fortunate to have the assistance of Dr.
Hunsicker, who is an internationally recognized expert in conducting large
scale clinical trials."
"We are very proud of Dr. Dixon's leadership in developing this new
clinical center that allows the University of Iowa and affiliated regional
hemodialysis units to take the lead in finding new strategies to deal with
this very difficult problem," said Francois M. Abboud, M.D., Edith King
Pearson Professor and Department Head in Internal Medicine and director of
the UI Cardiovascular Research Center.
University of Iowa Health Care describes the partnership between
the UI College of Medicine and the UI Hospitals and Clinics and the patient
care, medical education and research programs and services they provide.