September 6, 2013

Two New UAMS Researchers Win Funding for Asthma, Cardiovascular Studies

LITTLE ROCK – Two University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) researchers, Joshua Kennedy, M.D., and Elvin Price, Pharm.D., Ph.D., are the newest recipients of the UAMS Translational Research Institute KL2 Scholar Career Development Awards, which will provide them with salary and research support for two years. The pair of new investigators was selected from a competitive pool of applicants this summer. Kennedy is striving to reduce asthma-related hospitalizations by reducing the exacerbating effects of cold viruses on asthma. Price is studying promising genetic predictors that he hopes will help doctors prescribe the right cardiovascular medicines for their patients. The prestigious national KL2 program supports promising new researchers to advance their research so they can compete for more sustained federal funding. “We had an excellent group of applicants and we are excited to have Dr. Kennedy and Dr. Price as our 2013 KL2 Scholars,” said Curtis Lowery, M.D., director of the Translational Research Institute and principal investigator for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) that supports the KL2 Scholar program. “We hope the KL2 Award will help jumpstart their research careers and put them on a path toward sustained NIH funding to further their research.” Kennedy and Price are among 13 KL2 Award recipients selected by the Translational Research Institute since 2010. The award helps them quickly develop their research programs with 75 percent salary support (up to $52,000 a year) that allows dedicated time to their research. They receive up to $25,000 a year in research funds, as well as travel funds, graduate-level tuition support, and assistance from mentors. Price earned his Doctor of Pharmacy degree from Florida A&M University in Tallahassee and his doctorate in clinical pharmaceutical sciences from the University of Florida in Gainesville. Kennedy, a Hot Springs native, is an internal medicine and pediatrics physician who earned his medical degree and completed residency training at UAMS. He joined the UAMS faculty in July after completing his allergy and immunology fellowship at the University of Virginia.