PHILADELPHIA — A physician from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania has received the highest honor bestowed by the United States Government on science and engineering professionals in the early stages of their independent research careers. Peter Reese, MD, MSCE, assistant professor of Medicine and Epidemiology, received the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers for "innovative work on ethical approaches to expanding access to organ transplantation."
"I feel very grateful to receive this award. I owe a great deal to my mentors and collaborators at Penn for their support," said Dr. Reese. "I hope that the award will direct attention to the pressing need to increase organ donation and reduce waiting times for transplants."
Dr. Reese, who takes care of kidney transplant recipients and living kidney donors, received the PECASE award for his efforts to develop effective strategies to increase access to kidney and liver transplantation. He uses tools from epidemiology, biostatistics, health services research and medical ethics to describe disparities in transplantation and methods to overcome them. Through policy development work with the United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS), his work helps to translate clinical research into effective national policy.
Dr. Reese's research was among the first to examine the practice and ethical implications of accepting live kidney donors with risk factors for kidney disease. He has written specifically about barriers to live donor transplantation, the use of kidneys from deceased donors at increased risk of HIV and other blood-borne viral infection, and the implications of proposed organ allocation systems for the elderly.
Dr. Reese's research efforts have been supported by the National Institutes of Health, the American Society of Transplantation, a T. Franklin Williams Award in geriatric research (co-sponsored by the Association of Specialty Professors and the American Society of Nephrology), and the Leonard Davis Institute.
For more information on the award, please see the press release from The White House.