Grant in honour of Dr. Barbara T. Murphy, Verici Dx co-founder and former Board member
Verici Dx plc (AIM: VRCI), a developer of advanced clinical diagnostics for organ transplant, announces that it has signed an agreement with the American Society of Transplantation (“AST”) to establish a Career Development Research Grant, commemorating Dr. Barbara T. Murphy, the Company’s late co-founder and Board member.
The grant will be awarded annually to a talented researcher in the fields of transplant science and immunology, enabling them to expand on preliminary research findings that have the potential to further the knowledge base in these areas.
Dr. Barbara T. Murphy, who passed away on 30 June 2021, was a leading nephrologist and specialist in kidney transplant immunology, with her research focusing on predicting and diagnosing the outcomes of kidney transplants.
The value of the initial grant is $50,000. The AST will be collecting the applications, with members of the AST Research Network Scientific Review Committee (SRC) choosing the recipient based on a scoring system reviewing the quality of the research. The grant recipient will be recognised during the 2022 American Transplant Congress, held from June 4-7, 2022, in Boston, MA, USA.
The AST is an organisation dedicated to advancing the field of transplantation and improving patient care by promoting research, education, advocacy, organ donation, and service to the community through a lens of equity and inclusion.
For more information on the grant and on how to apply: www.myast.org/research-grants
“I am honoured to launch this research grant with the AST in memory of Barbara. She was an innovator, an entrepreneur and a mentor, and it is only befitting that this grant will enable promising, innovative researchers to further the research base within the transplant and immunology fields, within which Barbara was a leading voice. She was a valued colleague and a good friend, and she is missed greatly by all of us at Verici Dx.”
“The AST is honored to partner with Verici on this award in tribute to Dr. Barbara T. Murphy. Dr. Murphy was a passionate supporter and inspiration to so many new investigators in the field of transplantation and it is particularly fitting that this generous award will be used to support the career development of a promising new investigator. As a past AST President, Dr. Murphy also understood the importance of our industry partners such as Verici in advancing innovation and I wish to thank Verici for their tremendous support.”
Dr. Murphy was the Murray M. Rosenberg Professor of Medicine, Chair of the Department of Medicine for the Mount Sinai Health System, and Dean for Clinical Integration and Population Health at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai.
Dr. Murphy earned her M.B. B.A.O. B.Ch. from The Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland and went on to do an internship at Beaumont Hospital in Dublin. She completed a residency rotation at Beaumont Hospital followed by a fellowship in Clinical Nephrology also at Beaumont Hospital. Dr. Murphy completed her postdoctoral training with a fellowship in Nephrology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School. As part of this she trained in transplant immunology at the Laboratory of Immunogenetics and Transplantation, Renal Division, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School. Dr. Murphy was recruited to Icahn Mount Sinai in 1997 as the Director of Transplant Nephrology and, just six years later, was named the Division’s Chief, becoming one of the youngest division chiefs in the United States as well as one of the few women at the time to hold the role. Among her many honours, Dr. Murphy was awarded the Young Investigator Award in Basic Science by the American Society of Transplantation in 2003. In 2005, Dr. Murphy became the Irene and Dr. Arthur M. Fishberg Professor of Medicine at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine. Then, in 2011, she was named Nephrologist of the Year by the American Kidney Fund. In 2012, she was named Chair of the Department of Medicine; at the time, she was only the second female chair of any department of medicine at a top 20 medical school in the United States. She received the distinguished Jacobi Medallion in 2014. She also received an honorary degree from University College, Dublin, Ireland. In 2016, Dr. Murphy was honoured by The Annual Irish America Healthcare & Life Science 50. She was named in June 2021 as the recipient of the ASN’s first Lifetime Achievement Award.
Dr. Murphy belonged to a number of professional societies including the American Society of Transplantation and the American Society of Nephrology. Among her numerous achievements, she has held many leadership roles at a national level, including being a member of the board of the American Society of Transplantation, the executive committee of the American Transplant Congress, and chair of Education Committee of the American Society of Transplantation. In 2009 Dr. Murphy was the president of the American Society of Transplantation, and she was the president-elect of the American Society of Nephrology at the time of her death.
Her area of interest was transplant immunology, focusing on the use of high throughput genomic technologies as a means to understand the immune mechanisms that lead to graft injury and loss, with the aim of identifying gene expression profiles and or genetic variants that may be used to predict those at greatest risk.
Verici Dx was founded on intellectual property developed at Icahn Mount Sinai by Dr. Murphy and her colleagues. Icahn Mount Sinai and Mount Sinai faculty have financial interests in Verici Dx.
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Verici Dx is an immuno-diagnostics company developing and commercialising tests to understand how a patient will respond and is responding to organ transplant, with an initial focus on kidney transplants. The body's own immune system poses a threat to a successful transplant or graft. Patients' immune systems differ in how they respond to the presence of the transplanted organ. Characterising this response and those of other biological pathways enables the development of RNA signatures for prognostic and diagnostic tests. Our products and solutions are underpinned by extensive scientific research into the recipient's RNA signatures and how that impacts on acute rejection, chronic injury and ultimately failure of the transplant. These RNA signatures may also inform clinicians as to the optimal strategy for immunosuppressive and other therapies for the most successful treatment to ensure graft acceptance with the least amount of side effects.
The foundational research was driven by a deep understanding of cell-mediated immunity and is enabled by access to expertly curated collaborative studies in highly informative cohorts in kidney transplant.
Founded in 1982, the American Society of Transplantation (AST) is an organization of more than 4,000 professionals dedicated to advancing the field of transplantation and improving patient care by promoting research, education, advocacy, and organ donation. The society is the largest transplant organization in North America and is recognized as the premier society for transplantation. AST members are sought out as transplant experts and advocates. Other transplant organizations, policy makers, regulatory agencies, payors, academic institutions, and the general public look to the AST for guidance, research, and resources related to transplantation.