Top Cystic Fibrosis Researcher Wins Stockton Kimball Award

Published June 1, 2015

Drucy S. Borowitz, MD.

Drucy S. Borowitz, MD

Cystic fibrosis expert Drucy S. Borowitz, MD, clinical professor of pediatrics, has received the 2015 Stockton Kimball Award for outstanding scientific achievement and service.

Borowitz accepted the honor May 28 during the School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences’ Faculty and Staff Recognition Awards celebration.

On two second-phase trials she leads, Drucy Borowitz, MD, is contributing to clinical research on cystic fibrosis, its genetic components, pharmacologic management and pediatric nutrition.

Dual Focus on Research, Clinical Care

During the event, Suzanne G. Laychock, PhD, senior associate dean for faculty affairs and facilities, noted Borowitz’s “clinical and scholarly passion for the care of patients with cystic fibrosis.”

Borowitz is an internationally recognized expert in nutrition and the involvement of the intestine and lung in cystic fibrosis.

Through most of her 27-year career at the University at Buffalo, the physician-scientist also directed the Cystic Fibrosis Center at Women and Children’s Hospital of Buffalo (WCHOB).

Borowitz has been a leading researcher of enzyme replacement therapy to correct digestive abnormalities in cystic fibrosis patients.

She has pioneered research using novel agents and dietary supplements to address the challenges her patients face with colonopathy and pulmonary function.

Spurring New Drug, Infant Care Guidelines

Borowitz’s research has been continuously funded since 1987 and has resulted in an extensive list of scholarly publications. This includes 35 articles within the past five years and many in high-impact journals.

She played a key role in developing a breakthrough drug approved for treatment of a less common gene mutation in cystic fibrosis.

She co-authored the study, “Cystic Fibrosis and the Role of Gastrointestinal Outcome Measures in the New Era of Therapeutic CFTR Modulation,” published in the Journal of Cystic Fibrosis.

She also led a Journal of Pediatrics study that resulted in new guidelines for managing infants with the disease.

Clinical Trials Include National Nutrition Study

Known internationally for her expertise in clinical trial investigation, Borowitz has led or co-led more than 35 clinical studies over 20 years.

On two second-phase trials she leads, she is contributing to clinical research on cystic fibrosis, its genetic components, pharmacologic management and pediatric nutrition.

She is a co-principal investigator (PI) on the Baby Observational Nutrition Study, funded by the National Institute for Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. The study grew out of a privately funded trial Borowitz has led as national senior PI since 2011.

Since 2012, she also has led a study to assess the effects of antioxidant-enriched multivitamin supplements on inflammation and oxidative stress in cystic fibrosis patients. The trial is closely aligned with her independent research.

Significant Service to Profession, University

Borowitz frequently gives invited presentations for national and international audiences.

She also is involved in efforts to bring more gastroenterologists into the cystic fibrosis field.

She has contributed her expertise and leadership to NIH study sections and committees, scholarly journals and the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.

Among many service activities at UB, she directs the medical school’s Integrating Special Populations team and serves on the Clinical Research Office Advisory Committee.

Recognized for Research, Exemplary Care

Borowitz has been recognized on multiple levels as an exemplary physician, researcher and medical educator.

In 2014, the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation gave Borowitz one of its highest honors — the Richard C. Talamo Distinguished Clinical Achievement Award. Later in the same year, the University recognized Borowitz with an Exceptional Scholar — Sustained Achievement Award.

The WCHOB’s Family Advisory Council gave her a Children’s Champion Award for her notable patient- and family-centered care.

UB medical students honored her with a Louis A. and Ruth Siegel Award honorable mention for teaching excellence. Borowitz teaches and mentors medical students, residents and fellows.

Award Honors Former Medical School Dean

Borowitz will deliver the Stockton Kimball Lecture in 2016.

The award and lecture memorialize Stockton Kimball, MD ’29, dean of the medical school from 1946 to 1958, and his contributions to physician training for more than 25 years.