Two Top Doctors Dedicated to Ending PKD Honored 

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Dr. Vincent Gattone and Dr. Dorien Peters have been awarded the Lillian Jean Kaplan International Prize for Advancement in the Understanding of Polycystic Kidney Disease (PKD). The award is a partnership between the PKD Foundation and International Society of Nephrology (ISN) and recognizes a medical professional or researcher exhibiting excellence and leadership in PKD research and whose work demonstrates tangible achievement toward improving knowledge and treatment of PKD.

The Kaplan award was established in 2002 by the PKD Foundation and the ISN through the generosity of Thomas Kaplan in memory of his mother, Lillian Jean Kaplan, who had PKD and died in 2002. The award is to stimulate members of the global scientific and medical communities to increase or begin research leading to a PKD treatment and cure, generate momentum in the PKD field and produce positive public awareness about PKD. The awards presentation took place at the ISN World Congress of Nephrology in Hong Kong on June 2. Both Dr. Gattone and Dr. Peters received a $50,000 cash prize.

Dr. Gattone is a professor of anatomy and cell biology at the Indiana University School of Medicine. He is also the director of the Electron Microscopy (EM) Core Lab, a facility supported by the PKD Foundation, to help PKD researchers worldwide gain access to EM capabilities. Gattone has worked in kidney pathology and renal cystic disease for more than 30 years. His research has focused primarily on PKD, using tools to investigate the mechanisms of disease progression and identify treatments of chronic renal diseases. Dr. Gattone is a member of the Scientific Advisory Committee of the PKD Foundation and has been instrumental in the initiative to repurpose drugs in the search for PKD therapeutics. 

Dr. Peters is a molecular and cellular biologist at Leiden University Medical Center in the Netherlands. She is head of the Developmental Genetics Group at the Department of Human Genetics and her research aims to get insight into mechanisms of inherited disorders, most notably PKD, for the design of new therapeutic approaches. Dr. Peters was involved in identification of the human genes that are involved in renal cystic disease and she generated several unique mouse models being used in testing therapeutic interventions. She is a member of the Scientific Board of the Dutch Kidney Foundation.

About PKD

Polycystic kidney disease (PKD) is one of the most common, life-threatening genetic diseases affecting thousands in America and millions worldwide. PKD causes fluid-filled cysts to grow in the kidneys, eventually leading to kidney failure. The average size of a normal kidney is a human fist. Polycystic kidneys can get much larger, some getting as large as a football, and weighing up to 30 pounds each. Parents have a 50 percent chance of passing the disease to each of their children. PKD equally affects people of all races, genders, nationalities, geographic locations and income levels. There is no treatment or cure for PKD.

About the PKD Foundation

The PKD Foundation is dedicated to finding treatments and a cure for polycystic kidney disease (PKD), to improve the lives of those it affects. We do this through promoting research, education, advocacy, support and awareness. Our goal is that one day no one will suffer the full effects of PKD. For more information about PKD and the PKD Foundation, visit or call 1.800.PKD.CURE (800.753.2873).

About ISN

The International Society of Nephrology (ISN) aspires towards the elimination of kidney disease worldwide. ISN is dedicated to advancing the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of kidney diseases in the developing and developed world. For more information, visit

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©2016, PKD Foundation ·The PKD Foundation is a 501 (c)(3), 509 (a)(1) public charity.

©2016, PKD Foundation ·The PKD Foundation is a 501 (c)(3), 509 (a)(1) public charity.