Dr. George Karpati, Senior Neurologist at the Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital and Izaak Walton Killam Professor of Neurology at McGill University, has been awarded the Prix Wilder Penfield, a prize that honours a researcher for their outstanding contribution in the field of biomedical science. Dr. Karpati received the award at a ceremony at the National Assembly on November 8. Two other members of the McGill community were honoured with a Prix du Québec this year: H. Patrick Glenn, who received the Prix Léon Guérin, and Lawrence A. Mysak, who received the Prix Marie-Victorin.
Dr. Karpati is a distinguished Clinician Scientist with many honours and awards including the Order of Canada, membership in the Royal Society of Canada, and a Lifetime Achievement Award in Neuromuscular Research and Clinics from the Muscular Dystrophy Association of Canada. In June 2005, he was appointed a Knight of the Ordre national du Québec.
Dr. Karpati is recognized internationally as one of the leading experts on the diagnosis and treatment of neuromuscular disorders. He has made seminal contributions in the area of muscular dystrophy. He was the first to show the localization of dystrophin to the muscle fibre surface and to demonstrate a lack of dystrophin in the fibres of Duchenne patients. Dr. Karpati demonstrated pre-clinical success with adenovirus-mediated dystrophin gene replacement in mice.
His research covers a broad range of basic and clinical studies on neuromuscular and neurological disorders, utilizing a broad spectrum of technologies including clinical science, histology, cytochemistry, molecular biology and genetics. Dr. Karpati's team has succeeded in eradicating the most malignant of brain tumours, glioblastoma, in preclinical models paving the way to clinical trials. Dr. Karpati is directing a large, CIHR-supported international consortium dedicated to molecular therapies of nervous system diseases. Dr. Karpati is one of 35 principal investigators in the Canadian Networks of Excellence dedicated to stem cell research focusing on adult liver-derived stem cells.
Dr. Karpati's research over the years has resulted in approximately 250 original research papers and review articles published in major respected biomedical journals and numerous invited lectures and visiting professorships. In addition, during the past four years, Dr. Karpati edited or co-authored five major books pertaining to the neuromuscular field including the first modern text on neuromuscular diseases written in Hungarian.-30-