Professor of biomedical engineering and orthopedic surgery receives highest Presidential Honor for Science and Engineering Professionals.
(from UVa Today November 30, 2010) — Edward Botchwey, professor of biomedical engineering and orthopedic surgery at the University of Virginia, was recently named by President Obama as a recipient of the Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers.
The award is the highest honor bestowed by the U.S. government on science and engineering professionals in the early stages of their independent research careers. Botchwey was one of 85 researchers from across the country to receive the honor.
“I’m deeply humbled to receive this award, and I will be forever grateful to the outstanding U.Va. colleagues, outside collaborators, graduate students and undergrads that I am blessed to work with. Our work together makes the research happen,” Botchwey said. “I am also very grateful to the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases for their nomination and ongoing support of my research.”
Botchwey, who specializes in tissue engineering, earned the award for a research project that focuses on promoting the growth of mature microvascular blood vessel networks to improve healing after transplant surgery or injury. He and his research team use the drug sphingosine 1-phosphate, or S1P, to induce arteriogenesis, a process by which new arterioles, or small blood vessels, form and existing ones structurally enlarge.
The drug, which is delivered from a polymer coating applied to a transplanted tissue, increases the number and diameter of microvessels that are critical to the preservation of tissues after surgery or injury. The project is funded by a five-year, $1.6 million grant from the National Institutes of Health.