BioMed Central Research Award

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Cancer 2013 WinnerJournal: Genome Medicine

Article: Tumor-associated copy number changes in the circulation of patients with prostate cancer identified through whole-genome sequencing

Author: Ellen Heitzer

Author Biography: Ellen Heitzer graduated from the University of Graz in Austria and obtained her PhD at the Medical University of Graz in Austria. At present Ellen is Assistant Professor at the Institute of Human Genetics at the Medical University of Graz. Her main research area is tumor genetics, especially the establishment of techniques for genomewide and high-resolution non-invasive monitoring of neoplastic diseases and the identification of novel predictive and prognostic biomarkers. Another interest of her is the identification of cancer susceptibility genes in familial and hereditary tumor syndromes.

Open Access Advocate of the Year

Neelie KroesWinner: Neelie Kroes – European Commission Vice-President for the Digital Agenda

Ms Kroes has been the Dutch member of the European Commission for almost ten years and has been responsible for the Digital Agenda for the past four and a half years. During this period, she has brought the open access agenda to the forefront of the spirited discussion on the future of science and research in Europe. Openness has been one of the main themes of this term, during which the Commission has proposed, and the European Parliament and Council of Ministers have agreed, that all articles produced with funding from FP7 and Horizon 2020 must be published using open access.


More information on this award can be found on the blog here and on the European Commission website here.


Plant Biology, Environmental Biology and Ecology

Plant Biology 2013 winnerJournal Name:  Genome Biology

Article: Thermal stress effects on grain yield in Brachypodium distachyon occur via H2A.Z-nucleosomes 

Author: Philip Wigge

Author Biography: Philip A Wigge is a Principle Investigator at the Sainsbury Laboratory Cambridge, UK. Philip originally studied for his PhD in John Kilmartin’s lab at the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology, where he learnt biochemistry in budding yeast, and received his PhD from Cambridge in 2000. He went on to work with plants in Detlef Weigel’s lab at the Salk Institute, La Jolla, CA. There he became interested in FT, and mechanisms by which it activates flowering. Currently, Philip’s group at Cambridge is interested in how temperature is perceived by plants, and how these signals are integrated into development.

Computational and high-throughput studies in genomics and systems biology

Journal: BMC Medicine

Article: Calcium-deficiency assessment and biomarker identification by an integrated urinary metabonomics analysis

Authors: Changhao Sun and Ying Li

Author Biographies: Chanhao Sun and Ying Li are the members of Chinese Nutrition Society and Chinese Environmental Mutagen Society.

changhao sunChanghao Sun is the vice president of Chinese Nutrition Society and the vice president of Chinese Environmental Mutagen Society. He is professor, Master and Ph.D. supervisor, the academic leader of State Key Discipline of Nutrition and Food Hygiene, the director of Department of Nutrition and Food Hygiene, and the dean of the School of Public Health, Harbin Medical University, China.



Ying LiYing Li is professor, Ph.D. supervisor, vice director and reserve academic leader of Department of Nutrition and Food Hygiene, Harbin Medical University, China. She is also the council member of Chinese Nutrition Society and the member of trace elements professional council of the Chinese Nutrition Society.



The main focus of their research is the associations and mechanisms of nutrients and nutrition related diseases.

Translational Medicine

Gail E. Besner, MDJournal: Stem Cell Research & Therapy

Article: Enteric nervous system abnormalities are present in human necrotizing enterocolitis: potential neurotransplantation therapy

Author: Gail E Besner

Biography : Gail E. Besner, MD, is a member of the Center for Perinatal Research at The Research Institute at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, Ohio USA. She holds the H. William Clatworthy Jr Professorship in Surgery at The Ohio State University College of Medicine, is a Professor of Surgery and Pediatrics at The Ohio State University College of Medicine, and is Director of the Pediatric Surgery Training Program and Co-Director of the Burn Program at Nationwide Children’s Hospital. Her clinical interests include neonatal surgery, necrotizing enterocolitis, and pediatric burn care. The main focus of the Besner Laboratory is the investigation of novel strategies to protect the intestines from injury, with special emphasis on necrotizing enterocolitis.


Cancer 2013 WinnerJournal: Genome Medicine

Article: Tumor-associated copy number changes in the circulation of patients with prostate cancer identified through whole-genome sequencing

Author: Ellen Heitzer

Author Biography: Ellen Heitzer graduated from the University of Graz in Austria and obtained her PhD at the Medical University of Graz in Austria. At present Ellen is Assistant Professor at the Institute of Human Genetics at the Medical University of Graz. Her main research area is tumor genetics, especially the establishment of techniques for genomewide and high-resolution non-invasive monitoring of neoplastic diseases and the identification of novel predictive and prognostic biomarkers. Another interest of her is the identification of cancer susceptibility genes in familial and hereditary tumor syndromes.

Clinical Medicine

Clinical Medicine 2013 winnerJournal: BMC Anesthesiology

Article: Breastfeeding and pain relief in full-term neonates during immunization injections: a clinical randomized trial

Authors: Ali Montazeri and Parvin Rahnama

Author Biographies: Ali Montazeri is Professor of Public Health and Epidemiology, Institute for Health Sciences Research, ACECR, Tehran, Iran. Ali studied for his PhD on health-related quality of life in lung cancer patients at University of Glasgow. His group are interested in mother and chilled health, and women’s health.

Parvin Rahnama is Assistant Professor, Department of Midwifery, Shahed University, Tehran, Iran. Parvin studied for her PhD on traditional and modern contraception.

Neuroscience, Neurology and Psychiatry

Neuroscience 2013 WinnerJournal: Journal of Neuroinflammation

Article: Erythropoietin improves motor and cognitive deficit, axonal pathology, and neuroinflammation in a combined model of diffuse traumatic brain injury and hypoxia, in association with upregulation of the erythropoietin receptor

Author: Sarah Hellewell

Author Biography: Dr Sarah Hellewell, a recent PhD graduate, worked as a Centre of Excellence in Traumatic Brain Injury Research (CETBIR) Fellow with NTRI since April 2013.  After her fellowship finished in March 2014, she joined the lab of Dr Ibolja Cernak at the University of Alberta in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Sarah will be working with the University of Alberta and Defence Research and Development Canada to research the effects of blast-induced neurotrauma on the long-term neuroinflammatory response and ongoing functional deficits after injury.

Public Health and Health Services Research

Public Health 2013 WinnerJournal: BMC Medicine

Article: Physical activity and clustered cardiovascular disease risk factors in young children: a cross-sectional study (the IDEFICS study)

Author: David Jiménez-Pavón

Author Biography: David Jiménez-Pavón is Lecturer at the Department of Physical Education and researcher of the GALENO research group at the University of Cádiz, Spain. He completed his bachelor degree in Physical Activity and Sport Sciences and his Master’s degree in Human Nutrition (both at University of Granada, EFFECTS-262 research group). Then, he completed his PhD between the Polytechnic University of Madrid and University of Granada under the guidance of Manuel Castillo Garzón, Jonatan Ruiz Ruiz and Marcela González-Gross. During his post-doc in the GENUD research group at University of Zaragoza under the supervision of Prof. Luis Moreno he started to work with the IDEFICS project from where derived this awarded paper. David is interested in the study of hydration and exercise physiology for randomized trials, and in the role of physical activity and exercise on the different cardiovascular risk factors/diseases from the epidemiological point of view.


Animal Science, Veterinary Research and Zoology

Animal Science 2013 WinnerJournal: BMC Biology

Article: The songbird syrinx morphome: a three-dimensional, high-resolution, interactive morphological map of the zebra finch vocal organ

Author: Coen Elemans

Author Biography: Coen Elemans is an Associate Professor at the University of Southern Denmark. Coen studied for his PhD with Prof Johan van Leeuwen on biomechanics at Wageningen University, The Netherlands. His current research addresses the question “How is neural activity translated into sound?”

Microbiology, Immunology, Infection and Inflammation

MIcrobiology Immunology 2013 WinnerJournal: Parasites & Vectors

Article: Interactions between AsaiaPlasmodium and Anopheles: new insights into mosquito symbiosis and implications in Malaria Symbiotic Control

Author: Guido Favia

Author Biography: Guido Favia is Professor at the University of Camerino, Italy. Guido studied for his PhD with Professor Mario Coluzzi on Molecular approach to the study of malaria vectors at La Sapienza University of Rome. His group are interested in controlling malaria by genetically modifying the mosquito vector to reduce its competence via the use of of paratransgenic agents.

Molecular and Cellular Science

Molecular and Cellular Science 2013 WinnerJournal: Epigenetics & Chromatin

Article: A quantitative atlas of histone modification signatures from human cancer cells

Author: Benjamin A Garcia

Author Biography :Benjamin Garcia is the Presidential Associate Professor of Biochemistry and Biophysics at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. He studied for his PhD in Chemistry with Donald Hunt at the University of Virginia, USA. Benjamin then went to post-doctoral research at the University of Illinois, USA investigating chromatin proteins with Dr. Neil Kelleher and Dr. Craig Mizzen. Following his initial faculty appointment at Princeton University, Benjamin became interested in developing new mass spectrometry methods and bioinformatic computational tools to investigate the function of cellular proteins, especially histones. His interests in this continue at the University of Pennsylvania where he and his team utilize large-scale proteomic data to improve our understanding of biological processes at the molecular level.

Case Report of the Year

Journal: Journal of Medical Case Reports
Article: Extensive deep vein thrombosis following prolonged gaming (‘gamer’s thrombosis’): a case report

Authors: Leon Hsien-Cheng Chang, Hayley Burbridge and Conroy Wong

Author Biographies:

Chang Case report winner 2013Dr. Leon Hsien-Cheng Chang currently is a Medical Tutor Specialist at Middlemore Hospital, Auckland, New Zealand.  He received his medical degree MBChB from University of Otago in New Zealand in 2003.  He completed his specialist training in Respiratory Medicine and received FRACP in 2013.



Burbridge case report winner 2013Dr Hayley Burbridge is currently a Senior House Officer in Emergency Medicine at Auckland City Hospital, Auckland, New Zealand. She received her medical degree MBChB from the University of Otago in New Zealand in 2011. She plans to specialize in Emergency Medicine and has accepted an Emergency Registrar training position for 2014.




Wong case report winner 2013Dr Conroy Wong is a respiratory and general physician, Clinical Head of Respiratory Medicine at Middlemore Hospital, and Honorary Senior Lecturer in Medicine at the University of Auckland. He qualified at the University of Otago and trained in respiratory medicine in Auckland, NZ and Nottingham, UK. He has research interests in bronchiectasis and pulmonary infections.



Open Data – sponsored by LabArchives




Journal: Gigascience

Article: Assemblathon 2: evaluating de novo methods of genome assembly in three vertebrate species


An offshoot of the Genome 10K project, and primarily organized by the UC Davis Genome Center, Assemblathons are contests to assess state-of-the-art methods in the field of genome assembly. Assemblathon 2 used real data from three vertebrate species and started in June 2011. The manuscript was published in July 2013. The following teams submitted one or more assemblies to the Assemblathon 2 project: CSHL team: P Baranay, S Emrich, MC Schatz; MLK team: MD MacManes; ABL team: H Chitsaz; Symbiose team: R Chikhi, D Lavenier, G Chapuis, D Naquin, N Maillet; Ray team: S Boisvert, J Corbeil, F Laviolette, E Godzaridis; IOBUGA team: TI Shaw, W Chou; GAM team: S Scalabrin, R Vicedomini, F Vezzi, C Del Fabbro; Meraculous team: JA Chapman, IY Ho, DS Rokhsar; Allpaths team:S Gnerre, G Hall, DB Jaffe, I MacCallum, D Przybylski, FJ Ribeiro, T Sharpe, S Yin; CBCB team: S Koren, AM Phillippy; PRICE team: JG Ruby; SOAPdenovo team: R Luo, B Liu, Z Li, Y Shi, J Yuan, H Zhang, S Yiu, T Lam, Y Li, J Wang; Curtain team: M Haimel, PJ Kersey; CoBiG2 team; Bruno Miguel Vieira, Francisco Pina-Martins, Octávio S. Paulo; BCM-HGSC team: Y Liu, X Song, X Qin, H Jiang, J Qu, S Richards, KC Worley, RA Gibbs; ABySS team: I Birol, TR Docking, SD Jackman; Phusion team: Z Ning; CRACS team: NA Fonseca; SGA team: JT Simpson, R Durbin; Computer Technologies Department (CTD) team: A Alexandrov, P Fedotov, S Melnikov, S Kazakov, A Sergushichev, F Tsarev: Newber-454 team: JR Knight. The resulting assemblies were assessed by teams from the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute (M Hunt, T Otto), UC Santa Cruz (D Earl, Paten B) and UC Davis (K Bradnam, J Fass, I Korf). Resources (sequences, fosmids, and optical maps) were generated and validated by E Jarvis, S Zhou, S Goldstein, M Place, DC Schwartz, M Bechner, J Shendure, J Kitzman, J Hiatt, J Howard, G Ganapathy, and G Zhang. The principle organizers behind Assemblathon 2 were David Haussler, Ian Korf, and Erich Jarvis.

Editor of the Year

Journal: Respiratory Research

Editors-in-Chief: Jan Lötvall & Reynold A Panettieri Jr

Editor Biographies:

Editor 2013 WinnerJan Lötvall is Professor at the Department of Internal Medicine at Göteborg University since 2002, and chairman of the Krefting Research Centre. He has clinical training in both Clinical Allergy and Clinical Pharmacology, and has a long-term experience in performing translational studies in asthma and allergy.  Dr Lötvalls current research interest also includes the biological function of exosomes and other extracellular vesicles, and their natural ability of transferring RNA between cells, after having published the original study documenting this process in 2007 in Nature Cell Biology.  Previously, Dr Lötvall has been a fellow at the Department of Thoracic Medicine, Imperial College, London and the Department of Respiratory Medicine, McMaster University, Canada, and has approximately 240 scientific papers published or in press (PubMed). He is co-Editor-in-Chief of the open access scientific journal “Respiratory Research”, and has in the last years been instrumental in starting two open access journals, including “Journal of Extracellular Vesicles”. He is also the first elected President of the International Society of Extracellular Vesicles (ISEV), rapidly growing non-profit organisation in the field of exosomes, microvesicles and other extracellular vesicles (; with 700 delegates 2013), and is the Past President of European Academy of Allergy and Clinical Immunology (EAACI).

Optimized-Panettieri(1)Reynold A. Panettieri, Jr, M.D., earned his medical degree from the University of Pennsylvania and completed his internship and residency in medicine at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, where he also obtained specialty training in pulmonary diseases. He then joined the faculty of the University of Pennsylvania, where he is currently a tenured Professor of Medicine and was awarded the Robert L. Mayock and David A. Cooper endowed professorship. Dr. Panettieri is also Adjunct Professor at the Wistar Institute. He is currently the Director of the Airways Biology Initiative and Deputy Director of the Center of Excellence in Environmental Toxicology at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine, and Director of the Comprehensive Asthma Program of the University of Pennsylvania Health System.

Dr. Panettieri was the principal investigator for several National Institutes of Health-sponsored grants, including an Asthma SCOR Award, focusing on airway smooth muscle function in asthma and the molecular and cellular mechanisms of airway smooth muscle function and growth. He is now director of a program project grant examining novel approaches in modulating GPCR function. He is the author of over 410 publications, including peer-reviewed research articles, reviews, chapters and abstracts, and serves on the editorial board of the American Journal of Physiology, Thorax and Pharmacologia. Dr. Panettieri is a co-editor-in-chief of Respiratory Research, an editor of the British Journal of Pharmacology and an associate editor of the American Journal of Respiratory Cell and Molecular Biology. He also reviews for 10 prominent journals in physiology, clinical immunology, allergy, and medicine and has given over 220 lectures and coordinated 30 symposia on topics in his specialty area.

Dr. Panettieri is the recipient of numerous honors and awards, including the Robert E. Cooke Memorial Lectureship at the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology Annual Meeting, the Joseph R. Rodarte Award from the American Thoracic Society and several honorary memberships, including membership in the American Society for Clinical Investigation, the Association of American Physicians, the National Asthma Education Program of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, and the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. He is also an active member of numerous national professional and scientific societies, including the American College of Chest Physicians, the Respiratory Structure and Function Assembly of the American Lung Association, and the American Thoracic Society.  In 2013, he was elected Chairman of the Respiratory Structure and Function Assembly of the American Thoracic Society.

Dr. Panettieri remains dedicated to educating the public about asthma. To this end, he serves as director of the Adult Asthma Patient Education Program in Philadelphia, the Philadelphia Asthma Task Force, the Allies Against Asthma, and the Attack Asthma Program sponsored by the American Lung Association of Southeastern Pennsylvania.

 Section Editor of the Year

Bernard Jaar_Johns Hopkins School of Medicine Journal: BMC Nephrology

Section Editor: Bernard Jaar

Section Editor Biography: Bernard Jaar is an assistant professor of medicine in the Division of Nephrology at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, USA, and holds a joint appointment in the Department of Epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, USA. He is also an associate faculty member at the Welch Center for Prevention, Epidemiology and Clinical Research at the Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions, USA, and chairman of the medical advisory board of the National Kidney Foundation of Maryland, USA. Jaar has a practice within the Nephrology Center of Maryland at Good Samaritan Hospital, USA, where he won the John Rogers Award for Distinguished Excellence in Teaching. In 2005 he was appointed a Fellow of the American Society of Nephrology and the National Kidney Foundation, and currently also serves on the National Kidney Foundation Dialysis Outcomes Quality Initiative Education Committee and Maryland’s Kidney Commission.