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ASH Honors Two Congressmen and NIDDK Director for their Public Service and Leadership in Hematology

ATLANTA, Dec. 5 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The American Society of Hematology (ASH), the world's largest professional society of blood specialists, will recognize two United States Congressmen and a hematologist for promoting biomedical research and the practice of hematology. The advocacy awards are given in conjunction with the Society's 49th Annual Meeting in Atlanta.

Representatives Jesse Jackson (D-IL) and Edward Markey (D-MA) will both receive ASH's Award for Public Service for their outspoken leadership in support of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The award honors elected public officials for their leadership on issues significant to blood disorders. In September 2006, both Congressmen were the only two members of the House to vote against legislation (H.R. 6164) to reauthorize and restructure NIH - a bill that would have removed the flexibility to adjust future NIH budget increases to appropriate levels. The final legislation signed into law contained significant improvements thanks to their efforts.

ASH's Outstanding Service Award, which recognizes individuals for their work on issues relevant to the Society's mission, will honor Griffin P. Rodgers, MD, of NIH, for his significant contributions to hematology, particularly in the areas of genetic diseases, molecular genetics of human hemoglobins, and hematopoiesis. Dr. Rodgers has been a key supporter in increasing the number of minority scholars in both the academic and research areas of hematology. He is also the first hematologist to be named Director of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Disease (NIDDK).

"It is an honor to recognize these individuals for their strong dedication to improving the understanding and treatment of blood disorders," said ASH President Andrew I. Schafer, MD, of New York Presbyterian-Weill Cornell Medical Center. "ASH deeply appreciates their support of the Society and its mission."

The awards will be presented on Sunday, December 9, at 1:30 p.m. EST following the joint ASH and European Hematology Association Policy Forum at the Georgia World Congress Center.

The American Society of Hematology ( is the world's largest professional society concerned with the causes and treatment of blood disorders. Its mission is to further the understanding, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disorders affecting blood, bone marrow, and the immunologic, hemostatic, and vascular systems, by promoting research, clinical care, education, training, and advocacy in hematology.

SOURCE American Society of Hematology
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