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ASH Honors J Evan SadlerMD PhD and Ayalew Tefferi MD with Henry M Stratton Medal

The American Society of Hematology (ASH) will recognize J. Evan Sadler, MD, PhD, of Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, and Ayalew Tefferi, MD, of Mayo Clinic College of Medicine, with the 2016 Henry M. Stratton Medal for their seminal contributions in the areas of basic and clinical/translational hematology research, respectively.

The Henry M. Stratton Medal is named after the late Henry Maurice Stratton, co-founder of Grune and Stratton, the medical publishing house that first published ASH’s journal Blood. The prize honors two senior investigators whose contributions to both basic and clinical/translational hematology research are well recognized and have taken place over a period of several years. Drs. Sadler and Tefferi will accept their awards at 9:30 a.m. on Tuesday, December 6, during the 58th ASH Annual Meeting and Exposition in San Diego.

image of J. Evan SadlerDr. Sadler, the recipient of the 2016 Henry M. Stratton Medal for Basic Science, is a Professor of Medicine and of Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics and Director of the Hematology Division at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. Dr. Sadler has pioneered the study of a number of blood coagulation factors, and his contributions have been particularly critical to the molecular, genetic, and biochemical characterization of von Willebrand factor and ADAMTS13, two proteins associated with bleeding and clotting disorders. His laboratory identified the molecular basis for a range of subtypes of the bleeding disorder von Willebrand disease, which has led to improved diagnosis and therapy. In addition, his complementary studies of ADAMTS13 structure and function have important implications for understanding the pathophysiology of thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura, a rare clotting disorder. His findings have also led to improved treatment. This molecular understanding of these diseases enabled Dr. Sadler to lead efforts to develop the current clinical guidelines for the diagnosis and treatment of VWD and TTP.

Dr. Sadler earned his PhD in Biochemistry and his MD from Duke University in 1978 and 1979. He completed his postgraduate internship at Duke University before heading to the University of Washington in Seattle, where he completed his fellowship. He began his academic career at Washington University in St. Louis in 1984.

Dr. Sadler served as the 2011 president of ASH, and he remains a dedicated member of the Society. He has served on many committees and journals, including the editorial board of Blood, the ASH Nominating Committee, and he has served as Scientific Program Co-Chair in 2008 at the 50th ASH Annual Meeting and Exposition. In addition to his dedicated volunteerism with ASH, Dr. Sadler has served on and chaired study sections at the National Institutes of Health and the International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis (ISTH). His most distinguished awards include the William Dameshek Prize from ASH, the Investigator Recognition Award and Distinguished Career Award from ISTH, and election to the National Academy of Medicine. In addition to his numerous research and leadership accolades, Dr. Sadler is known as an extraordinary mentor, having trained in his laboratory a number of the key world leaders in academic hematology, particularly in the subfield of hemostasis.

image of Ayalew TefferiDr. Tefferi, the recipient of the 2016 Henry M. Stratton Medal for Clinical/Translational Science, is a Professor of Medicine at Mayo Clinic College of Medicine in Rochester, Minnesota. He has devoted his career to the study of myeloproliferative neoplasms (MPNs) and other myeloid malignancies. He has been instrumental in establishing the myeloproliferative practice at the Mayo Clinic, where he trained young staff to help conduct translational and clinical research. Dr. Tefferi is best known for his groundbreaking work in defining the pathogenesis and prognostic features of myeloproliferative neoplasms, as well as testing novel treatments. He has been a leader in the discovery and characterization of pathogenic mutations in MPNs and their rapid translation into disease classification, prognostication, and treatment, which has led to his clinical trial work using JAK inhibitors in patients. Dr. Tefferi has also served on the World Health Organization classification committee for myeloid neoplasms and has led the effort in revising the diagnostic criteria for MPNs. His expertise in the field and superior lectures are well recognized, and he has been a key faculty member of many national board review courses, including those sponsored by Harvard Medical School, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, and George Washington University.

After earning his medical degree from the University of Athens Medical School in Athens, Greece, in 1982, Dr. Tefferi completed a residency in internal medicine at St. Joseph Hospital in Chicago, Illinois. He went on to complete his fellowship at Mayo Clinic College of Medicine in 1989, and later joined the institution’s faculty.

Dr. Tefferi is a member of many societies, including ASH. He has also served on the editorial board of several journals, including Blood, the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Leukemia, the American Journal of Hematology, and the Mayo Clinic Proceedings. He is currently the editor-in-chief of the Blood Cancer Journal. Dr. Tefferi has published over 580 peer reviewed articles, and he is currently a physician author for the MPN content in UpToDate. In 2008, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center awarded Dr. Tefferi the Emil J. Freireich Medal, their highest award for achievement in the management of cancer. He has been rated “Best Teacher” by medical students at Mayo Clinic multiple times.

“I am honored to present the Henry M. Stratton Medal to Drs. Sadler and Tefferi for their outstanding work and commitment in researching and treating human hemorrhagic and thrombotic disorders and myeloproliferative neoplasms, respectively,” said ASH President Charles S. Abrams, MD, of University of Pennsylvania. “Their important contributions to hematology are only matched by their selfless dedication to fostering the careers of others. They truly epitomize the best in leadership and service to our community.”

The American Society of Hematology (www.hematology.org) is the world’s largest professional society concerned with the causes and treatment of blood disorders. Its mission is to further the understanding, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disorders affecting blood, bone marrow, and the immunologic, hemostatic, and vascular systems by promoting research, clinical care, education, training, and advocacy in hematology. The official journal of ASH is Blood (www.bloodjournal.org), the most cited peer-reviewed publication in the field, which is available weekly in print and online.

Sara Khalaf, American Society of Hematology
[email protected]; 202-552-4925