Lillian Jean Kaplan International Prize for Advancement in the Understanding of Polycystic Kidney Disease
The Lillian Jean Kaplan International Prize recognizes individuals for excellence and leadership in Polycystic Kidney Disease (PKD) clinical or basic research whose seminal scientific work has advanced knowledge and treatment of PKD.
Professor Watnick was involved in developing the first genetic test for autosomal dominant PKD (ADPKD) and, alongside colleagues, made several important discoveries about the genetic basis of PKD using DNA analysis. She has since established an independent laboratory, applying multiple approaches to understanding PKD biology, including using model organisms. Her work has made an important contribution to understanding the critical function that PKD proteins play in vasculature. She continues to work on the genetics and pathophysiology of aneurysm formation, a poorly understood manifestation of ADPKD.
Professor Watnick has been an investigator in multicenter trials, including TEMPO, REPRISE and TAME. She was past chair of the PKD Foundation scientific advisory committee and supports collaborative science to achieve a cure for PKD. Since 2010, she has led the Maryland PKD Research and Translation Core Center and is co-principal investigator of the coordinating site for the NIH-funded PKD Centers’ program. In this capacity, she works to ensure that research resources are distributed to a broad community of investigators to advance cutting-edge PKD science.
On receiving the award, Professor Watnick commented, “I am humbled by this award and honored to join a group of individuals who have contributed so significantly to advancing our understanding of polycystic kidney disease and its complications. Over the past 20 years, we have gone from primarily providing supportive care to having an FDA-approved medication. I look forward to the next 20 years with optimism.”
Professor Watnick will be giving the talk ‘Vascular Complications of Autosomal Dominant Polycystic Kidney Disease,’ in the Lillian Jean Kaplan Prize WCN session on Saturday, April 1, 2023, 15:45-14:45 Bangkok time, in Ballroom 1.