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Professor of cardiology honoured

SCMR gold medal

9 February 2012

Professor Dudley Pennell, consultant cardiologist at Royal Brompton Hospital, professor of cardiology at Imperial College London, and director of the cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) unit at Royal Brompton Hospital, has been awarded the Society for Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance’s (SCMR) highest honour, the Gold Medal.


Professor Pennell has specialised in CMR for more than 20 years and during that time has been responsible for significant changes in the care of people with cardiomyopathies (heart muscle disease) and thalassemia major. His research into targeting the genetic causes of cardiomyopathy, and identifying risk factors for death and illness in cardiomyopathy using CMR, received global media attention in 2010. New techniques introduced by Professor Pennell have been instrumental in reducing the cardiac mortality rate of thalassemia major patients to near zero.


Deborah Berkowitz, executive director of the SCMR, said: “This award is presented annually by the SCMR board for trustees for outstanding achievement in the field of CMR as well as exemplary service to the Society. Professor Pennell has excelled in both regards.


“He has promoted the field of CMR around the world in lectures and research papers and led his laboratory to international recognition and prominence in a variety of clinical applications of CMR.


“He has also been tireless in his dedication to the SMCR, having been instrumental in establishing the Society, and serving as its first vice president and its second president. His achievements are truly outstanding and we congratulate him as the recipient of the 2012 gold medal.”


Professor Pennell has been director of the CMR unit at Royal Brompton for the past 15 years. The unit, which is believed to be the largest CMR centre in the world, now performs 6,500 procedures per year.


On receiving the award, Professor Pennell said: “I am honoured to receive this award from the Society for Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance and immensely proud of my work with them over the years. It has been my privilege to lead the development of Royal Brompton’s CMR unit and to have had an impact on providing better treatments and life outcomes for patients with debilitating and often life-threatening heart conditions”.


Professor Pennell has published 350 research papers in peer reviewed journals and has given in excess of 750 invited lectures around the world. He has been editor-in-chief of the Journal of Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance for the past five years, raising its impact factor to 4.33. He is also director of the cardiovascular biomedicalresearch unit, run by Royal Brompton & Harefield NHS Foundation Trust in partnership with Imperial College, which is funded by the National Institute for Health Research.


Read more about Professor Dudley Pennell

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