The American Diabetes Association has awarded the prestigious Banting Medal for Scientific Achievement to Philipp E. Scherer, PhD, Professor and Director of the Touchstone Center for Diabetes Research at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas.
This award for scientific excellence recognizes significant, long-term contributions to the understanding, treatment or prevention of diabetes. Dr. Scherer was bestowed with this honor at the Association’s 75th Scientific Sessions® June 5-9, 2015, at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center in Boston.
“I’m deeply honored to receive this award,” said Dr. Scherer Monday in a phone interview. “It’s an award for a whole program in the area of diabetes research. I was very gratified to see our hard work pay off. And it takes our research to the next level, working toward bigger and better things.”
Dr. Scherer is known for the discovery of adiponectin in 1993 and then for defining its physiologic roles as an ADA funded researcher in 1998. Adipose tissue had previously been considered simply as a storage depot for triglycerides, but Dr. Scherer’s studies using cell biological and biochemical approaches, as well as mouse genetics, revealed that adipose tissue is, in fact, a highly responsive endocrine organ that plays a crucial role in metabolism and inflammation.
“Adiponectin is beneficial for insulin control,” Dr. Scherer said. “You maintain better control of glucose and lipids in the system. It is derived from fat cells, but what makes it unique is the more fat you have, the less adiponectin in the body.”
These discoveries, combined with innovative methods he developed to study the individual contributions of specific cells to regulation of metabolism, have defined Dr. Scherer as one of the most noteworthy and creative scientists in the field.
His innovative contributions have been described in more than 320 publications, some of which have been cited more than 1,000 times, and comprise a comprehensive characterization of adipose tissue physiology.
The American Diabetes Association is leading the fight to Stop Diabetes® and its deadly consequences and fighting for those affected by diabetes. The Association funds research to prevent, cure and manage diabetes; delivers services to hundreds of communities; provides objective and credible information; and gives voice to those denied their rights because of diabetes. For the past 75 years, our mission has been to prevent and cure diabetes, and to improve the lives of all people affected by diabetes. For more information please call the American Diabetes Association at 800-DIABETES (800-342-2383) or visit diabetes.org. Information from both these sources is available in English and Spanish.