HomeWashington Letter2014 ▶ ATS Convenes Capitol Hill Briefing on Sickle Cell and Lung Co-Morbidities
ATS Convenes Capitol Hill Briefing on Sickle Cell and Lung Co-Morbidities

April 2014

This week, the ATS convened an educational briefing for congressional staff with the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute and Sickle Cell Disease Association of America on sickle cell disease (SCD) and lung co-morbidities such as asthma and pulmonary hypertension. The event was hosted by Sen. Chris Coons (D-DE) and NHLBI Director Gary Gibbons, MD, chaired the speaker panel. Speakers included Michael DeBaun, MD, director of the Vanderbilt-Meharry-Matthew Walker Center for Excellence in Sickle Cell Disease, Elizabeth Klings, MD, associate professor of medicine at Boston University, and Angele Ebosele, a young woman with sickle cell disease and asthma from Franklin, TN.

Dr. Gibbons gave an overview of NHLBI SCD research, which has helped extend the life span of people with the disease. Dr. DeBaun's presentation outlined current treatment options for children and adults with SCD and asthma and research efforts to develop new therapies to improve the quality and prolong life. Dr. Klings focused on pulmonary hypertension in patients with SCD and called on Congress to help strengthen this research through sustained NIH funding. Ms. Ebesole, who plans to become a pediatric hematologist, shared her personal struggle with SCD and asthma, including frequent pain episodes and hospitalizations. In his remarks, Sen. Coons highlighted how U.S. investments in SCD research are benefiting global public health and voiced his continued commitment to expanding NIH research.

Last Reviewed: October 2017