November 4, 2021

O’Connor lauded for contributions to PCD research, treatment


by Rachel Vitolo

Michael O’Connor, MD

Michael O’Connor, MD, assistant professor of Pediatrics, has received the Passion, Caring & Dedication (PCD) Award from the Primary Ciliary Dyskinesia (PCD) Foundation for his contributions to the PCD community.

According to the organization, the award “demonstrates outstanding work in the education, diagnosis, prevention, treatment and cure of PCD.”

O’Connor is a pediatric pulmonologist whose research has focused on the diagnostic process for PCD, specifically on the role of nasal nitric oxide testing in making a diagnosis of PCD.

He joined the faculty in 2016 after completing his residency and fellowship in pediatric pulmonology at Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

O’Connor currently serves as the medical director for the PCD Foundation North American Clinical Registry, which he helped develop. He also leads the PCD Center at Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt.

“Working with the PCD Foundation in recent years has been an amazing and rewarding experience,” O’Connor said.

“I am very proud of everything we have been able to accomplish, especially in regard to the North American patient registry, and I think this award reflects the collective work of the group. I am very humbled to be the one representing this important project.”

The PCD Foundation North American Clinical Registry serves as a repository of clinical data that includes demographics, symptoms and current therapies of patients with PCD who consent to participate. The goal of the registry is to use the information to develop streamlined care guidelines, drive quality improvement initiatives, and enhance PCD treatments and outcomes.

“Dr. O’Connor has transformed the care of infants and children with PCD at Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt,” said Paul Moore, MD, director of Pediatric Allergy, Immunology and Pulmonary Medicine, vice chair for clinical affairs in the Department of Pediatrics and professor of Pediatrics and Pharm- acology.

“His receipt of the PCD Award is a national recognition of his passion, care and dedication to advances in PCD care that we get to witness daily here at VUMC.”

The PCD Award will be presented at the annual PCD Foundation fundraising gala, which will be held via a virtual format in December.