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Vascular Surgeon-Scientist Tammy Nguyen Received the Wylie Scholar Award For Diabetic Wound Healing Research

Date Posted: Friday, May 20, 2022


Tammy T. Nguyen, MD, PhD is a vascular surgeon-scientist who is interested in understanding why people living with diabetes have trouble getting foot wounds to heal. She received the 2022 Wylie Scholar Award from Vascular Cures for her project “Exploring How the Diabetic Immune System Contributes to Non-Healing Ulcers.” The career development grant will provide $150,000 over the next three years.  This award is intended to enable recipients to devote a significant amount of their time to vascular research. 

Diabetic foot ulcers are associated with impaired bone marrow-derived immune function. Dr. Nguyen is studying the effect of type 2 diabetes (T2D) on the development of the immune system and design targeted therapies to combat poor wound healing for people with T2D. She developed a novel method to collect and expand human stem cells directly from the bone marrow of donors both with and without T2D who underwent lower extremity amputation for non-healing wounds.  

“This award will allow us to garner data and help me compete for future independent research funding from national health agencies,” said Nguyen, assistant professor of surgery at UMass Chan Medical School and Medical Director of the Lower Extremity Wound Clinic at UMass Memorial Medical Center. “I plan to use the Wylie Scholar Award to accelerate our current work on evaluating how diabetes affects the human bone marrow immune cell development and understand how hematopoietic stem cells are specifically affected by the yellow bone marrow compartment expansion that occurs in diabetes.”

Dr. Nguyen was selected by a committee of previous Wylie Scholars. Since 1996, Vascular Cures has established a group of 24 surgeon-scientists at 15 institutions throughout the United States who are transforming patient care. Those individuals have generated a combined $4.4 million in subsequent national research funding.

“This is an extremely competitive grant for translational investigators,” said Andres Schanzer, MD, Professor and Chief, Division of Vascular Surgery at UMass Chan Medical School. “Past awardees have included many high impact scientific leaders in vascular surgery.” 

The Wylie Scholar Program supports outstanding young vascular surgeon-scientists who combine active patient care with academic research. Wylie Scholars have become North America’s world-class vascular surgeon-scientists, and many are now chiefs at major academic centers and prominent leaders in the field.

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