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Frontiers Presents 2019 Team Science Award

April 11, 2019

By Marion During

Dr. Richard Barohn presents the 2019 Team Science Award to Drs. Doug Wright, Mamatha Pasnoor and Patricia Kluding smile at Frontiers Research Day 2019.The 2019 Frontiers Team Science Award was presented to Patricia Kluding, P.T., Ph.D., Douglas Wright, Ph.D., and Mamatha Pasnoor, M.D., at Frontiers Research Day on Thursday, March 28, 2019, for their project titled "Team Science Approaches to Translational Research in Diabetic Neuropathy.

"One of Frontiers' key goals is to help investigators think about how a wider, multi-disciplinary perspective will lead to better research outcomes," said William Brooks, Ph.D., Associate Director of Frontiers. "By identifying and supporting the work of investigators from varied backgrounds like Drs. Kluding, Wright and Pasnoor, we expect to both propel new discoveries and inspire colleagues and junior investigators at all our partner institutions to look beyond their own disciplines."

Kluding, Wright and Pasnoor's team science approach was based on collaborative interests in developing clinical interventions for patients suffering from diabetic neuropathy. Their team, which spans the disciplines of physical therapy, anatomy and cell biology and neurology, has significantly added to the understanding of how physical activity and exercise can improve the lives of patients with diabetic neuropathy, and how various biomarkers can be modified by exercise.

"The acknowledgement of our team effort was really authentic and it reinforced my belief that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts with research," Kluding said. "The success that Doug, Mamatha and I have shared to date is only possible because we worked together and focused on the science. I am grateful that Frontiers made the space for this award and I appreciate the acknowledgement of our team."

Team science is a collaborative effort to address scientific challenges by combining the strengths of professionals in different fields. According to the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences of the National Institutes of Health, which funds Frontiers, partnerships across disciplines and organizations are essential because the expertise, capabilities and viewpoints necessary for successful translation often come from different groups. Frontiers values translational team science works to foster teams that include community organizations, patients, providers and researchers of varied disciplines.

"Navigating today's climate of clinical and translational research requires extensive teamwork with individuals from diverse backgrounds and training," Wright said. "These individuals must work well together and remain focused on common goals, and our research team is the perfect example of this type of teamwork."

Patricia Kluding is Professor and Chair of the Department of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Sciences at the University of Kansas Medical Center. She directs the Health, Exercise and Aging Lab (HEAL) on clinical research programs focused on improving the health and wellness of people with chronic disease or disability. As the Director of Frontiers Clinical Studies and Recruitment Support, Kluding works closely with investigators, medical informatics, communication experts and community researchers with the participant registry program.

Douglas Wright is a Professor of Anatomy and Cell Biology at the University of Kansas Medical Center. In 2018 he was named Vice Chair of Research for the Department of Anesthesiology. His research addresses diseases and conditions affecting sensory neurons and peripheral sensation. The main goals of his laboratory are to understand the mechanisms that affect normal sensation and find interventions that can improve sensory functions. Wright serves on and has chaired many grant review panels for the National Institutes of Health, the American Diabetes Association and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.

Mamatha Pasnoor is an Associate Professor of Neurology, the Director of the Clinical and Neurophysiology Fellowship Program and Associate Program Director of the Neuromuscular Fellowship Program at the University of Kansas Medical Center. As an active neuromuscular physician, Pasnoor evaluates and manages patients with various neuromuscular conditions with a special focus on neuropathies and Myasthenia gravis. She serves as Advisory Board Member of the Myasthenia Gravis Association of Kansas City and is a board member of the National GBS/CIDP Association.

Last modified: Apr 11, 2019