Research - VA San Diego Healthcare System
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VA San Diego Healthcare System



VASDHS William S. Middleton Award Recipients

Dr. Kirk Hammond

Kirk Hammond, MD

Dr. Kirk Hammond, a researcher and cardiologist received the William S. Middleton Award in 2017 in recognition of his contributions to pioneering the use of gene therapy to treat heart failure. The approach was found to be safe and effective in patients with heart failure. Larger trials are forthcoming.

Dr. Michael Oxman

Michael Oxman , MD - 2014 John B. Barnwell Award

Dr. Michael Oxman, an infectious disease physician and researcher received the John B. Barnwell Award in 2014 in recognition of his contributions to our understanding of the human zoster virus (HZV) and for his leadership role on VA CSP: 403: the Shingle Prevention Study which was the first ever vaccine trial for preventing the reactivation of a herpes infection involving 38,000 volunteers.

Dr. Brian P. Head

Brian P. Head, Ph.D. - 2012 PECASE Award

Dr. Head received the PECASE award (Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers) for research that may soon lead to gene therapies that treat a variety of nervous system disorders.  His work holds great promise for helping those with neurodegenerative disorders such as age-related brain disorders, Alzheimer’s disease, patients recovering from stroke, and Veterans with traumatic brain injury. 


Roland C. Blantz, MD – 2006 Middleton Award for kidney physiology and pathology research

Dr. Blantz is a physician in Nephrology at the VA San Diego Medical Center and is a professor of medicine and head of Nephrology-Hypertension at the University of California, San Diego. He significantly influenced the direction of kidney disease management and treatment as well as universally transformed standard strategies used to delay and even prevent end-stage renal failure.


Douglas D. Richman, MD – 2002 Middleton Award for HIV/AIDS research

Dr. Richman is an internationally recognized researcher in AIDS and HIV Infections and the Director of the Center for AIDS Research at the University of California, San Diego. His research helped guide antiretroviral drug treatment and combination therapy for millions of patients leading to highly active antiretroviral therapy.


Marc A. Schuckit, MD – 1997 Middleton Award for alcohol and drug dependence research

Dr. Schuckit was director of the Alcohol Research Center at the VA San Diego Medical Center and is professor of Psychiatry at the University of California, San Diego. His research helped define the relationship between alcohol’s effect and later alcoholism, leading to research on the genetics of alcoholism.


Larry Squire, PhD – 1994 Middleton Award for memory research

Dr. Squire, Senior Research Career Scientist at the VA San Diego Medical Center, made significant discoveries regarding components and mechanisms of memory leading to a greater understanding of Alzheimer’s disease and memory impairment among the aging.

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