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First ever Award for Extraordinary Impact on Health bestowed on Moderna and Pfizer

While announcing 2021’s Top 10 Clinical Research Achievement Awards, the US Clinical Research Forum revealed that Pfizer and Moderna would be honoured for their COVID-19 vaccines.

Close up of several people's hands raising a gold trophy - idea of an award

The Clinical Research (CR) Forum has announced that Moderna and Pfizer will be the recipients of its first ever Award for Extraordinary Impact on Health. They also announced the recipients of 2021’s Top 10 Clinical Research Achievement Awards.

The Award for Extraordinary Impact on Health honours exceptional clinical and translational research that benefits all peoples and nations. It was presented to Moderna and Pfizer for their work in developing vaccines against COVID-19.

In a statement the CR Forum said: “The rapid development of these vaccines shows what clinical and translational research can accomplish at its best. The researchers of both vaccines, along with the countless others who supported the effort, are to be commended, heralded and congratulated. This achievement is a demonstration of the research continuum from basic science, through translation into clinical research, to safe and effective vaccines to protect human health.”

Dr William Gruber, Senior Vice President of Clinical Research and Development from Pfizer and Dr Brett Leav, Vice President of Clinical Development, Public Health Vaccines, from Moderna accepted the awards on behalf of their research teams.

Dr Gruber commented: “At the end of 2020, we received a much-needed sense of hope that our pursuit and relentless effort to study a vaccine to prevent COVID-19 disease was successful. The urgency of COVID-19 forced us to think differently and challenge traditional vaccine research and development. This outcome of our studies was truly a watershed moment for the overall impact on science, clinical research and those urgently waiting for an answer of how we may put an end to this pandemic.”

Dr Harry Selker, Chair of the CR Forum and Dean, Tufts Clinical and Translational Science Institute at Tufts University, remarked: “There is perhaps no better time than during this terrifying pandemic to highlight the importance of clinical research. Unlike previous generational disasters, for which armies, relief efforts and policy changes were needed, for this generational catastrophe, the answer could only come from clinical research. And these vaccines, and the Top 10 awardees, exemplify success in this.”

The CR Forum also presented its annual recognition of the top 10 outstanding research accomplishments in the US from the previous year, chosen through nominations from the scientific community. These awards honour ground-breaking clinical and translational research advances that benefit the health and welfare of all Americans.

The Top 10 Clinical Research Achievement Awards Finalists are:

  • Anti-Selig-8 Antibody for Eosinophilic Gastritis and Duodenitis – Dr Evan Dellon, Professor of Medicine, Division of Gastroenterology & Hepatology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • Evaluation of the anti-SARS-CoV-2 humoral immune response in a cohort of COVID-19 convalescent individuals – Dr Christian Gaebler, Instructor in Clinical Investigation, Rockefeller University
  • Genome-wide cell-free DNA mutational integration enables ultra-sensitive cancer monitoring – Dr Dan Landau, Associate Professor of Medicine, Weill Cornell Medicine
  • Integrating Global Health with the Microbiome – Dr Jeffrey Gordon, Dr Robert J. Glaser Distinguished University Professor, Washington University
  • ISCHEMIA Trial – Dr David Maron, Professor of Medicine, Stanford University School of Medicine; Dr Judith Hochman, Professor & Associate Director of Cardiology, New York University (NYU) Grossman School of Medicine
  • Kisspeptin in the Evaluation of Delayed Puberty – Dr Stephanie Seminara, Professor of Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital; Dr Yee-Ming Chan, Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, Boston Children’s Hospital; Dr Margaret Lippincott, Instructor in Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital
  • Remdesivir in COVID-19 – Dr John Beigel, Associate Director for Clinical Research, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease (NIAID), National Institutes of Health (NIH)
  • Ruxolitinib for treatment of vitiligo – Dr David Rosmarin, Assistant Professor of Dermatology, Tufts Medical Center
  • Selumetinib in Children with Inoperable Plexiform Neurofibromas – Dr Brigitte Widemann, Deputy Director, Center for Cancer Research, National Cancer Institute (NCI)
  • The CENTAUR Trial for ALS – Dr Sabrina Paganoni, Co-Director Neurological Clinical Research Institute, Massachusetts General Hospital
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