Pittsburgh, PA (PRWEB) November 13, 2012
Susan Manzi, MD, MPH, Co-founder of the Lupus Center of Excellence at West Penn Allegheny Health System, joins the Lupus Foundation of America in unveiling a new national initiative to spread lupus awareness.
The Lupus Foundation of America (LFA) will reveal new survey findings about the public's perception of lupus and provide details about a national initiative dedicated to bolster lupus awareness and promote education about the disease at 11:30 a.m. today at the National Press Club in Washington, DC.
Dr. Manzi, a member of the LFA’s board of directors and medical advisory committee, will be a featured panelist in the presentation along with Shannon Boxx, a member of the US women's Olympic soccer team who won gold in London and is living with lupus.
"It's gratifying to see the Lupus Foundation of America and courageous individuals like Shannon Boxx do so much to elevate lupus in the public's consciousness," said Dr. Manzi. "I'm proud to play a part in the Lupus Foundation of America’s ongoing efforts to raise awareness of lupus and highlight the urgent need for more lupus research.”
Lupus is a chronic autoimmune disease that causes inflammation and damage to parts of the body, including skin, joints and kidneys. The LFA estimates that more than 1.5 million Americans have some form of the disease.
Dr. Manzi is recognized nationally and internationally as a leader in lupus patient care and research, and a pioneer in scientific investigation of cardiovascular disease in patients with systemic lupus erythematosus. Dr. Manzi is the Secretary/Treasurer of the Systemic Lupus International Cooperating Clinics Committee and has been a member of a number of Study Sections for the National Institutes of Health (NIH). She has participated in the design and implementation of many phase I, phase II and phase III clinical trials and her expertise in this area has led to her appointment to the FDA Arthritis Advisory Board and six data safety monitoring boards for NIH intramural and extramural programs. Dr. Manzi has been named one of the "Best Doctors in America" and one of the "Best 100 Doctors in Pittsburgh."
Dr. Manzi and her colleagues in the Lupus Center of Excellence helped design a new blood test to help clinicians diagnose lupus with greater ease and accuracy. The Avise-SLE test, which became commercially available this year, uses one blood sample from a patient to check for five distinct bio-markers that help to rule-in the diagnosis of systemic lupus erythematosus while ruling out other rheumatic diseases. This group of elite physicians and scientists has also received research grants to study genetic markers that may predict stroke in lupus patients, explore the risk of thrombosis associated with lupus and examine the link between heart disease and lupus.
In addition to her role as founder and director of the Lupus Center of Excellence, Dr. Manzi serves as Chair of the Department of Medicine for West Penn Allegheny Health System.
The Lupus Foundation of America (LFA) is the oldest and largest national nonprofit voluntary health organization focused on improving the quality of life for people with lupus. LFA's dual mission serves the ongoing needs of people affected by lupus today while leading efforts to find a cure.