Ochsner Health Recognizes Two Scientists with 36th Annual Alton Ochsner Award Relating Smoking and Disease
Two scientists have been awarded the 36th annual Alton Ochsner Award Relating Smoking and Disease. This year’s honorees include: Peter G. Shields, M.D., Deputy Director of The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center and thoracic oncologist with The Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute in Columbus, Ohio, and K. Michael Cummings, Ph.D., M.P.H., Professor Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Co-Leader of the Tobacco Control Research Program, Hollings Cancer Center at the Medical University of South Carolina.
Dr. Shields and Dr. Cummings join the ranks of more than 55 scientists, researchers and industry leaders recognized by Ochsner Health over the last three and a half decades. Bestowed annually, this prestigious honor celebrates individuals who have made major contributions regarding the relationship between smoking and disease along with the development of innovative treatment modalities. The award is named in honor of Alton Ochsner, M.D. – co-founder of the Ochsner Clinic (now known as Ochsner Health) based in New Orleans. In 1939, Dr. Ochsner published the first evidence indicating that tobacco smoking was the major cause of lung cancer.
“At Ochsner Health, we believe research is key to unlocking deeper understanding of complex healthcare issues and developing innovative treatments. We commend both of these research giants for their dedication and passion to further understand smoking related disease and smoking cessation,” said Leonardo Seoane, M.D., Chief Academic Officer, Ochsner Health.
This year’s honorees will each receive a $7,500 honorarium, an award medallion and a plaque describing key research findings. Dr. Shields’ research identifies phenotypes and gene-environment interactions related to cancer risk, specifically breast cancer and lung cancer. This work explores smoking-related biomarkers of exposure and harm. Dr. Shields is currently leading a clinical study of the effects of electronic cigarette use in smokers.
Dr. Cummings’ work identifies practical ways to deliver smoking cessation treatments to smokers and evaluates the impact of local, state, national and international policies intended to reduce smoking. Notably, Dr. Cummings pioneered the use of telephone contact to promote smoking cessation and led the effort to unearth harmful industrial practices that induced cigarette smoking.
For more information on the Alton Ochsner Award Relating Smoking and Disease call 504-842-3700. For more information on this annual award, visit https://research.ochsner.org/opportunities/research-awards/the-alton-ochsner-award-relating-smoking-and-disease
About Ochsner Health
Ochsner Health is a system that delivers health to the people of Louisiana, Mississippi and the Gulf South with a mission to Serve, Heal, Lead, Educate and Innovate. Ochsner Health is a not-for-profit committed to giving back to the communities it serves through preventative screenings, health and wellness resources and partnerships with innovative organizations that share our vision. Ochsner Health healed more than 900,000 people from across the globe in 2020, providing the latest medical breakthroughs and therapies, including digital medicine for chronic conditions and telehealth specialty services. Ochsner Health is a national leader, named the top hospital in Louisiana and a top children’s hospital by U.S. News & World Report. As Louisiana’s leading healthcare educator, Ochsner Health and its partners educate thousands of healthcare professionals annually. Ochsner Health is innovating healthcare by investing in new technologies and research to make world-class care more accessible, affordable, convenient and effective. Ochsner's team of more than 32,000 employees and 4,500 providers are working to reinvent the future of health and wellness in the region. To learn more about Ochsner Health, please visit www.ochsner.org.