21 June 2013
Professor John Eisman AO has won the American Society for Bone and Mineral Research (ASMBR) William F. Neuman Award.
The award is the ASBMR's oldest and most prestigious award. It recognizes an ASBMR member for outstanding and major scientific contributions in the area of bone and mineral research and for contributions to associates and trainees in teaching, research, and administration.
Dr Neuman was a world-renowned scientist in the field of mineral metabolism. He authored major works in the chemistry of mineral and matrix, the function of bone cells, the metabolism of parathyroid hormone, and the concept of bone membrane.
Of the previous 33 awardees, only 3 have been from outside the United States. Professor Eisman is the second Australian to receive the award. The first was Professor Jack Martin AO, one of Australia’s most esteemed medical scientists and the founder of skeletal research in Australia.
Professor Eisman, a recognised leader in calcium, vitamin D and bone disease, established Garvan’s Bone and Calcium Research Program in 1984, and then led the program for 28 years.
Among Professor Eisman’s many achievements was the setting up in 1989 of the Dubbo Osteoporosis Epidemiological Study in regional NSW, now the world’s longest-running epidemiological study of osteoporotic fractures in men and women. The study has been used to develop predictive models and algorithms, recently embodied in a fracture risk calculator, now used by doctors across the globe.
Recently, Professor Eisman has been spearheading a program to raise the awareness of GPs and the public about osteoporosis. The program, known as Health Education for Longer Life in Osteoporosis (HELLO), had its inaugural sessions in Sydney in 2011.
Eisman also initiated and co-chaired an international Task Force examining ‘Secondary Fracture Prevention’, which published its report in the prestigious Journal of Bone and Mineral Research last year.
In recent years, Eisman has been working as part of major international consortia in efforts to find the genes linked to osteoporosis and fracture.