Congress Award Winners

Caminito TangoIASP Award for Excellence in Pain Research and Management in Developing Countries (Basic Science)

The IASP Award for Excellence in Pain Research and Management in Developing Countries honors an individual or team that has achieved a level of excellence in programs of basic science research in pain or pain management.

Perumal YogeeswariPerumal Yogeeswari, MPharm, Ph.D., is this year’s recipient of the Award for Excellence in Pain Research and Management. Dr. Yogeeswari is a professor in the Department of Pharmacy of the Birla Institute of Technology & Science-Pilani, Hyderabad campus in India. Her research interests are in the area of drug discovery for the treatment of neuropathic pain. She has established her own research group, which has consistently delivered potential leads for novel targets in neuropathic pain during the past six years. 

The Patrick D. Wall Young Investigator Award for Basic Science

The Patrick D. Wall Young Investigator Award was initiated in 1987 and honors individuals who have achieved a level of independence as a scholar in the field of pain.

Theodore PriceTheodore John Price, Ph.D., is the recipient of the Patrick D. Wall Young Investigator Award. An associate professor in the Department of Pharmacology at the University of Arizona School of Medicine, he received his PhD in 2003 from the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio under the mentorship of Christopher Flores and Kenneth Hargreaves working on cannabinoid pharmacology. His laboratory works on the molecular biology of nociception with a focus on mechanisms that drive chronic pain, pioneering investigations into how local translation in the axonal compartment of nociceptors contributes to the development of chronic pain. Dr. Price also focuses on central mechanisms that are responsible for the maintenance of chronic pain states. He published more than 50 peer-reviewed articles in international journals, 16 of these as corresponding author and 15 as first author. 

Ulf Lindblom Young Investigator Award for Clinical Science

The Ulf Lindblom Young Investigator Award for Clinical Science was first presented in 2008 and honors an individual who has achieved a level of independence as a scholar in the field of pain for clinical science.

Tine VervoortTine Vervoort, Ph.D., has been named the Ulf Lindblom Young Investigator Award recipient. Her PhD was one of the first systematic and experimental approaches to reinvigorate research on the social context of pain. Research in this area is ethodologically complex (studies in dyads) and time consuming (coding of facial expression). Her work is timely and innovative and brings several key mechanisms of child pain experience and suffering into a social context. After her PhD, she was awarded a highly competitive postdoc position of the Flemish Research Council (Belgium). She has developed her own research line, including developing and integrating theoretical models, formulating innovative and creative ideas/hypotheses, designing experiments to test these ideas, and reporting the results in international journals. 

The Ronald Dubner Research Prize

The Ronald Dubner Research Prize is an award for trainees presented at the World Congress on Pain. Since 1993, this award has honored the best clinical or basic science research paper, series of papers, or doctoral thesis in the field of pain, published or in press, while in training as a student, intern, resident, predoctoral fellow, postdoctoral fellow, or equivalent. This year, the IASP Fellowships, Grants, and Awards Working Group awarded two exceptional candidates.

Tasuku AkiyamaTasuku Akiyama, Ph.D., has been named the Ronald Dubner Research Prize recipient. Dr. Akiyama was a post-doctoral fellow in the Department of Neurobiology, Physiology and Behavior at UC Davis from 2008 to 2012 and is currently a project scientist, where he has conducted research on the neural mechanisms of mammalian itch and pain sensations. During this time, Dr. Akiyama has published numerous research papers, nearly all as first author, including several in PAIN. His work addresses itch and pain processing at the systems, cellular, and molecular levels. 

Ruth Drdla-SchuttingRuth Drdla-Schutting, Ph.D., is this year's second Ronald Dubner Research prize recipient. She is a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Neurophysiology, Center for Brain Research, Medical University of Vienna, Austria. Her general research interests are in the spinal cord mechanisms underlying chronic pain. Her current work explores the action of opioids on synaptic plasticity at synapses in the superficial layers of the spinal cord dorsal horn. Her research activity is devoted to the study of the cellular mechanisms of induction and reversal of synaptic LTP at C‐fiber synapses in the spinal cord dorsal horn. In particular, she is investigating the effect of opioids on these processes using electrophysiological techniques as well as behavioral testing, western blotting, and imaging techniques.

Philip A. Spiegel IASP Congress Trainee Scholarship

This scholarship was established in 2011 by IASP and friends and family of Philip A. Spiegel, a young medical researcher and IASP member who died December 22, 2010, in San Mateo, California, USA. He suffered from Complex Regional Pain Syndrome and was planning to enter medical school to study pain management.

Flavia DiPietroFlavia Di Pietro, Ph.D. candidate, has been awarded the Philip A. Spiegel Trainee Scholarship. Ms. Di Pietro is currently studying brain mechanisms in chronic pain with functional neuroimaging. She graduated from Physiotherapy in 2008, completing an Honors dissertation on perceptual dysfunction in chronic low back pain. After graduation she worked in an inter-disciplinary pain management center in regional Western Australia for eighteen months. In addition, she earned a highly competitive Australian Postgraduate Award Scholarship and moved to Sydney to complete her PhD with Professor Lorimer Moseley at Neuroscience Research Australia. Ms. Di Pietro wishes to pursue neuroimaging research in pain and has developed a curiosity in the methods by which we analyze and interpret brain imaging data. She is very excited to be working with fMRI while it is still in stages of rapid progress and improvement.