May 5, 2011

Bernard to deliver Amberson Lecture at Thoracic Society meet

Bernard to deliver Amberson Lecture at Thoracic Society meet

Gordon Bernard, M.D.

Gordon Bernard, M.D.

The Amberson Lecturer is an individual with a career of major lifetime contributions to clinical or basic pulmonary research and/or to clinical practice.

The lecture is delivered in honor of James Burns Amberson, M.D., an international authority on chest disease and tuberculosis.

As the premier gathering of clinicians and scientists committed to advancing pulmonary, critical care and sleep medicine, the ATS International Conference is an important venue for recognizing leaders in these fields for their extraordinary contributions to and achievements in lung disease research, treatment and prevention.

“As a clinical trialist I am particularly honored to receive this award from the American Thoracic Society in honor of Dr. J. Burns Amberson, who was instrumental in conducting some of the first randomized trials in America for the treatment of any disease” said Bernard, also the Melinda Owen Bass Professor of Medicine and senior associate dean for Clinical Sciences.

“His studies brought the first effective antibiotic treatment, streptomycin, forward to patients suffering and dying from the scourge of tuberculosis.”

Bernard came to Vanderbilt in 1979 as the Parker B. Francis Fellow in the Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine and was soon named associate chief of the Division for Clinical Affairs. He then took over the administration of the Institutional Review Board (IRB) at Vanderbilt.

After working through the kinks of the Medical Center's research review process, he was tapped to oversee the University's clinical and translational research enterprise, which ultimately became known as VICTR.

This program was started with a $40 million clinical and translational science award (CTSA), which Bernard applied for in 2007, that allows the institute to provide next-generation support to faculty working to translate fundamental scientific discoveries into clinical practice, with innovative training programs and state-of-the-art informatics and biostatistical methods.

“This is an honor Gordon richly deserves,” said Jeff Balser, M.D., Ph.D., vice chancellor for Health Affairs and dean of the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine.

“For the more than 30 years he has been at Vanderbilt, Gordon has made remarkable contributions to our research enterprise, vastly improving the translation of discoveries from bench to bedside, thereby impacting patients around the world.”