CHAPEL HILL, Feb. 12, 2014 — William J. Powers, M.D., the H. Houston Merritt Distinguished Professor and chair of the Department of Neurology in the University of North Carolina School of Medicine is honored with a top award by the American Stroke Association. Powers will receive the award and deliver the William Feinberg lecture — “Hemodynamics and Stroke Risk in Carotid Artery Occlusion” — at the International Stroke Conference 2014 in San Diego.
The Feinberg Award is named for Dr. William Feinberg (1952-1997), a prominent stroke clinician-researcher and American Heart Association volunteer who contributed to a fuller understanding of the causes of stroke. The award recognizes a Stroke Council Fellow actively involved in patient-based research who has made significant contributions to clinical stroke research.
Powers' career has been dedicated to improving the outcome of patients with stroke and cerebrovascular disease. "I am very pleased to receive this award that honors Bill Feinberg who was greatly admired by all of us for his clinical skill and perceptive intellect," said Powers. "It is a great honor to join the roster of previous recipients that reads like a Who’s Who in clinical stroke research for the past two decades."
His early work helped establish concepts of blood pressure auto-regulation and acute blood pressure management in stroke, influential on the choice and timing of anti-hypertensive therapies and the consideration of acute vs. chronic blood pressure control. He later identified patterns of blood pressure control in intracerebral hemorrhage and noted that the tissue surrounding the hemorrhage is not ischemic. Powers spearheaded studies suggesting chronic hemodynamic impairment from occlusive cerebrovascular disease.
“His efforts have defined many aspects of stroke clinical care, and have developed a type of rigorous and evidence-based clinical care delivery that has been a key influence on several generations of neurologists,” said S. Thomas Carmichael, M.D., Ph.D., professor and vice chair for Research and Programs in the Department of at UCLA.
"The best part of my medical research career was when I could study those areas that I thought were most important and make some interesting discoveries. This award is particularly gratifying because it tells me that many others agree that what I have done is important to them as well."