Vay Liang & Frisca Go Award for Lifetime Achievement

MARTIN L. FREEMAN, MD, FACG, FASGE

Dr. Freeman is a Professor of Medicine and Pediatrics at the University of Minnesota, where he is Chief of the Division of Gastroenterology, Hepatology and
Nutrition, Medical Director of the program for Total Pancreatectomy and Islet Autotransplantation, and Director of the Advanced Pancreaticobiliary Endoscopy
Fellowship. He obtained his under graduate degree from Yale University and initially studied science with the intention to become a wildlife biologist; reflecting
a lifelong passion for birds and wildlife. After very briefly considering a career as an electric guitarist, having played since age 12 – he instead chose a career in
medicine, attending medical school at Columbia University and completing his internal medicine residency at the University of Minnesota.

After becoming faculty at Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis, a University of Minnesota affiliate, he developed an interest in the then nascent field
of interventional endoscopy. Although initially focused on biliary disease, his focus soon shifted to pancreatic disease; an area which was at that time thought to be devoid of meaningful intervention. He would soon lead a seminal multicenter study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine in 1996, which included the first multivariable model to predict risk factors for post ERCP pancreatitis.

Dr. Freeman then broadened his interest to pancreatic disease in general, with a special focus on acute, recurrent and chronic pancreatitis and, in 2006, coauthored the American College of Gastroenterology Guidelines for Management of Acute Pancreatitis with Peter Banks. In 2009, he moved to the University of Minnesota, then as interim Chief of the Division of Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Nutrition, where he developed the advanced Pancreaticobiliary Endoscopy fellowship, and was awarded the “Master of Endoscopy” Award by the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy. He also became medical director of the program for Total Pancreatectomy with Islet Autotransplantation, a radical and now increasingly adopted approach. Dr. Freeman has
authored more than 200 papers and 30 book chapters, as well as leading 3 key instructional DVDs for the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy focused on pancreatic interventions. However, his proudest legacy includes mentoring GI fellows and faculty in the field of pancreatology, some of whom have become leaders in their own right.

At the University of Minnesota, Dr. Freeman had the privilege of developing a lifelong collaboration and friendship with Ashok Saluja; and through Dr. Saluja, became involved with the American Pancreatic Association. The APA has offered Dr. Freeman perhaps his proudest achievement of integrating endoscopically
focused interventions on the pancreas with the broader disciplines of medical pancreatology, surgery, and basic science. Through his involvement with the APA, he also organized the first international multidisciplinary symposium on Interventions for necrotizing pancreatitis in the era of minimally invasive and endoscopic therapy, resulting in a multi-author paper in Pancreas in 2012. In 2013, he had the special privilege of serving as President of the APA. During his tenure he co-chaired a one day international symposium on recurrent acute pancreatitis, which was published in Pancreas this year.

The Vay Liang & Frisca Go Award for Lifetime achievement in Pancreas is perhaps the greatest honor of Dr. Freeman’s career. He cannot thank the APA enough for the privilege of this honor, and for the opportunity to interact with the finest minds in the world!

Past Recipients

  • 2017: RODGER A. LIDDLE, MD
  • 2016: CHRIS E. FORSMARK, MD
  • 2015: STEPHEN PANDOL, MD
  • 2014: WILLIAM CHEY, MD AND ASHOK SALUJA, PHD
  • 2013: MICHAEL STEER, MD AND MASAO TANAKA, MD, PHD
  • 2012: HORST F. KERN, MD AND MURRAY KORC, MD
  • 2011: ANDREW L. WARSHAW, MD
  • 2010: PETER A. BANKS, MD

Distinguished Service Award

DANA K. ANDERSEN, MD, FACS
SCIENTIFIC PROGRAM MANAGER, NIDDK

Dr. Andersen received his undergraduate and medical school training at Duke University, where he was a member of Alpha Omega Alpha, the medical honorary society. His research mentor at Duke was Hal Lebovitz, the Chief of Endocrinology, who taught him to question dogma and inspired him to include research in his career goals. Dr. Andersen remained at Duke for his residency training in both Internal Medicine and General Surgery, and became Board Certified in both specialties. He initially planned to become a Gastroenterologist, but a 6-month elective as a General Surgery resident convinced him that abdominal surgery was more interesting and more fun.

Dr. Andersen’s career is marked by decades of pioneering research and discoveries in the diagnosis and treatment of pancreatic diseases. At SUNY, he and his colleagues developed the method of isolated human pancreas perfusion. Cadaveric pancreata were not yet sought for islet transplantation, and organs were only available for in vitro perfusion studies. He continued his career as Chief of General Surgery for the University of Chicago where his lab found that membrane-bound GLUT2 was internalized by insulin in normal livers, but remained membrane-bound and therefore actively releasing glucose in livers of animals with chronic pancreatitis. In 1994, he was recruited to Yale University as Chief of Surgical Gastroenterology and Chief of General Surgery at Yale New Haven Hospital. At Yale, his division conducted one of the first studies showing that training on a virtual reality simulator resulted in an 85% reduction of intra-operative errors during laparoscopic cholecystectomy. The study, published in the Annals of Surgery, has been cited more than 2000 times in the medical literature. Clinically he worked with Mark Topazian and Fred Gorelick to develop organ-sparing excavation techniques to treat chronic pancreatitis and low-level malignancies of the pancreas. In 2001, he was recruited as the Haidak Professor and Chair of the Department of Surgery at the University of Massachusetts where he established a program for total pancreatectomy with islet auto-transplantation, and performed the first TPIAT procedure in New England. During his tenure, he was able to persuade Ashok Saluja to move to UMass as Professor of Surgery, Medicine, and Physiology where he immediately began studying something called HSP70, and its inhibitor, a botanical compound called triptolide. The rest, as they say, is history.

Dr. Andersen continued his legacy at Johns Hopkins as Vice-chair and Chief of Surgery at Hopkins Bayview Medical Center, where he was also President of the Medical Staff. In 2012, he joined the Division of Digestive Diseases and Nutrition at NIDDK where he currently serves as Scientific Program Manager. His focus at NIDDK has been on the development of research programs in pancreatic disease. The 2013 workshop on Pancreatitis-Diabetes-Pancreatic Cancer was instrumental in the development of the NIDDK-NCI co-sponsored Consortium for the Study of Pancreatitis, Diabetes, and Pancreatic Cancer (CPDPC). Dr. Andersen has served as President of the Association for Academic Surgery, was a recurring member of the Surgery, Anesthesiology and Trauma study section of the NIH, and is a co-editor of the popular textbook Schwartz’s Principles of Surgery. He is the recipient of the NCI Director’s Award of Merit, is a Trustee of the National Pancreas Foundation, and currently serves as an adjunct Professor of Surgery at Oregon Health and Science University in Portland, where he lives.

Having attended the meetings of the American Pancreatic Association since its days at the Ambassador West Hotel in Chicago, he is particularly grateful to the APA for the honor of being selected as the recipient of the Distinguished Service Award.

Past Recipients

  • 2017: JULIE FLESHMAN, JD, MBA
  • 2016: SUDHIR SRIVASTAVA, PH.D., MPH, MS
  • 2015: MUSHTAQ KHAN, DVM, PHD
  • 2015: JOSE SERRANO, MD, PHD
  • 2014: STEPHEN P. JAMES, MD
  • 2013: AGI HIRSHBERG
  • 2012: EDWARD D. PURICH, PHD

Hirshberg Award

Each year, the Hirshberg Foundation gives an award to the best abstracts in pancreatic cancer presented at the Annual Meeting. In 2016, the awards went to:

BEST CLINICAL SCIENCE ABSTRACT
AATUR SINGHI – UNIVERSITY OF PITTSBURGH MEDICAL CENTER

Each year, the Hirshberg Foundation gives an award to the best abstracts in pancreatic cancer presented at the Annual Meeting. In 2016, the awards went to:

BEST BASIC/EXPERIMENTAL ABSTRACT
THOMAS MACE – THE OHIO STATE UNIVERSITY

Il-6 And Pd-l1 Antibody Blockade Combination Therapy Limits Tumor Progression In Murine Models Of Pancreatic Cancer

NPF Award

Each year, the National Pancreas Foundation gives an award to the best basic science and clinical abstracts in pancreatitis. In 2016, the awards went to:

OLGA MARENINOVA – UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA LOS ANGELES

Downregulation of Atg4b Stimulates Autophagy and Ameliorates Alcohol-induced Pancreatic Injury

SANDRA VAN BRUNSCHOT – ACADEMIC MEDICAL CENTER

Endoscopic or Surgical Step-up Approach for Necrotizing Pancreatitis, A Multi-center Randomized Controlled Trial

Presidential Award for Best Basic Science Abstract

With the large number of basic science abstracts submitted this year, we wanted to also recognize the exceptional work done in this category. At the 2016 meeting, the award went to:

KRUTIKA PATEL – MAYO CLINIC

Bile Acids(BA) in Human Pancreatic Necrosis(PN) Worsen Acute Pancreatitis(AP) via a Non-micellar Interaction With Fatty Acids(FA).