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Drs. Andrew Lackner and Marta Marthas

Two NCRR-supported researchers, Drs. Andrew Lackner and Marta Marthas, have received Elizabeth Glaser Scientist Awards from the Pediatric AIDS Foundation. They are two of five recipients from the international research community who will receive up to $682,000 over 5 years to conduct pediatric AIDS research. The award is named in memory of the organization's founder and AIDS activist, the late Elizabeth Glaser. Lackner, chairman of comparative pathology at NCRR's New England Regional Primate Research Center, will use his $650,000 Glaser award to study the neurologic sequela of HIV infection in the simian immunodeficiency virus-infected macaque model of AIDS. He will explore why the incidence of neurologic abnormalities is higher in HIV-1 infected children than in adults. A research grant of more than $675,000 will help Marthas, a virologist at California Regional Primate Research Center, develop strategies for preventing infection or delaying progression of pediatric AIDS.

Blue Pages Project Earns 'Hammer'

The Hammer Award, a special honor given by the vice president's National Performance Review to people who have participated in a team effort contributing dramatically to improving the way government works, was presented recently to participants in the cross-HHS Blue Pages Project work group.

The Office of Research Services' Dr. Cherie Fisk, assistant director for scientific affairs, represented NIH on the team and was one of those receiving the award. The group redesigned the way HHS programs and offices will be listed in telephone books throughout the nation.

The hammer -- which cost less than $6, plus a few cents for ribbon, a few bucks for wood and paint, and a card from the vice president -- symbolizes the way workers are going to build a new government that works better and costs less.

NIDR Pain Research Honored

The American Pain Society presented its highest honors in pain research to two investigators for their work at the National Institute of Dental Research. Drs. Mitchell Max and Gary Bennett received the awards, each accompanied by a $10,000 prize, at the society's annual meeting held recently in Washington, D.C.

Max, chief of NIDR's clinical trials unit, Pain and Neurosensory Mechanisms Branch, received the Wilbert E. Fordyce Clinical Investigator Award for developing innovative clinical trial methods and treatments for pain caused by nerve damage. His research has focused on the mechanisms and treatment of pain caused by conditions such as postherpetic neuralgia (nerve damage that can follow an attack of shingles) and diabetic neuropathy.

Bennett received the Frederick W. L. Kerr Basic Science Research Award for his development of an animal model of chronic neuropathic pain that has been adopted by scientists at universities and pharmaceutical companies around the world and has led to the development of investigational drugs for treating persistent pain. The award also recognized his contributions to defining the peripheral and central mechanisms by which nerve injury leads to chronic pain. Until last July, Bennett was chief of NIDR's neuropathic pain and pain measurement section in the Pain and Neurosensory Mechanisms Branch. He is now professor of neurology at Allegheny University of the Health Sciences in Philadelphia.

NIH'ers Claim Communication Awards

The International Blue Pencil and Gold Screen competitions, sponsored by the National Association of Government Communicators, annually recognize outstanding government communications projects and their producers. Blue Pencil Awards are given for the best writing, photography, print publications and their producers. Gold Screen Awards are given to the best in film, visual arts and broadcasting.

NIH'ers, their awards, project titles and categories are listed below:

Blue Pencil
  • Elaine Baldwin, NIMH project officer, First Place, "People," Public Service Announcement-Ad Slick Category.

  • National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, First Place, "The Pima Indians," Brochures & Booklets for a General Audience (1-3 colors).

  • National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, Second Place (tie), The Sports Guide: NHLBI Planning Guide for Cardiovascular Risk Reduction Projects, Publication for a Technical Audience (1-3 colors).

  • National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, First Place, Alcohol Health & Research World: Vol. 19, No. 3, "The Genetics of Alcoholism," Publication for a Technical Audience (4 colors).

  • Clinical Center Office of Communications, First Place, "Foil the Flu," Visual Design, visual communication via posters, flyers, maps, logos, folders, etc.

Gold Screen

  • Elaine Baldwin, NIMH project officer, Second Place, "Summer Travel Not an Option for Many with Panic Disorder," News Release.

Kudos for Panic Disorder Campaign

The NIMH Panic Disorder Education Program has won first place awards in four communications competitions. Sponsored by medical, government, and public relations organizations, the contests attracted entries from all over the world.

Panic disorder, which affects 3-6 million Americans at some time in their lives, is characterized by repeated panic attacks involving numerous physical symptoms, accompanied by overwhelming fear and feelings of unreality. Untreated, many people with panic disorder can become severely disabled and even housebound. But 70 to 90 percent of patients improve significantly when treated appropriately.

The American Medical Association's International Health and Medical Film Competition awarded the campaign two first prizes, a coveted "Freddie" for each entry. At a recent awards ceremony, the "Train" television public service announcement (PSA) took first place in the PSA category, and the video documentary Panic Disorder: Stories of Hope won first place in the health sensitivity category.

The International Blue Pencil Competition of the National Association of Government Communicators awarded NIMH first place in the PSA Ad Slick category recently (see above). This print PSA also depicts the symptoms and fear that characterize panic disorder. The video news release (VNR), "Summer Travel Not an Option for Many with Panic Disorder," which won second place in the Gold Screen VNR competition, portrays people whose lives are restricted because they have panic disorder and have become housebound.

Inside PR, the largest trade publication in the public relations industry, awarded the "People" print PSA campaign first prize in the PSA category of the Creativity in Public Relations Awards. In addition, the overall Panic Disorder Education Program received a certificate of excellence in the government agency category.

Finally, the Public Relations Society of America National Capital chapter awarded the Panic Disorder Education Program its top award for campaigns in the public service category.

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