CONTACT: JENNIFER BROWN
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 335-9917; fax(319) 384-4638
Release: Aug. 27, 2001
UI professor honored by Muscular Dystrophy Association
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- University of Iowa researcher Kevin P. Campbell, Ph.D.,
the Roy J. Carver Chair of Physiology and Biophysics, and professor of neurology,
will be honored by the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) at their annual
Jerry Lewis Telethon that will be held Sept. 2-3 in Los Angeles.
Campbell is this year's recipient of the MDA's S. Mouchly Small Scientific
Achievement Award. The award, which was established in 1997 to honor the late
S. Mouchly Small, M.D., is presented annually to an MDA-funded researcher
who has made significant contributions in the field of muscular dystrophy
research over the year. The award comes with a $10,000 grant to fund the recipient's
S. Mouchly Small was a noted psychiatrist and educator whose interest in
neuromuscular diseases prompted his strong relationship with the MDA. This
relationship lasted from the organization's earliest years in the 1950s throughout
Mouchly Small's lifetime. He held several important positions within the MDA,
including serving as the organization's president from 1980 until 1989.
"I am honored to be this year's recipient of the Scientific Achievement
Award," Campbell said. "It is a particular pleasure to receive this
award since it is named after S. Mouchly Small who was president of MDA when
I received my first MDA grant twenty years ago."
Campbell will receive the S. Mouchly Small Scientific Achievement Award
in recognition of his success in identifying the roles of sarcoglycan proteins
in muscular dystrophy. These proteins are part of a large complex of proteins
called the dystrophin-glycoprotein complex, which forms an essential bridge
between structures inside and outside of muscle cells.
Campbell and his team have developed animal models and tissue systems to
investigate the role of this family of proteins in muscular dystrophies. They
have found that defects in various sarcoglycans cause the loss of the dystrophin-glycoprotein
complex from different types of muscle, which in turn leads to muscle deterioration.
Their basic research has provided a clearer understanding of muscular dystrophy
disease processes and suggested a potential treatment for damage caused to
heart muscles by one form of muscular dystrophy. Earlier this year, using
mice with this particular type of muscular dystrophy, Campbell and his colleagues
tested their idea and found that long-term treatment with verapamil (a drug
used to treat hypertension, angina and certain arrhythmias) could prevent
heart muscle damage in the mice without serious side effects.
Campbell, who also is a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator and
a UI Foundation Distinguished Professor, will attend the telethon with his
family to receive the award.
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