Critical care

First Dräger Award for Intensive Care Medicine bestowed

13 June 2007

Lübeck, Germany. The European Society of Anaesthesiology (ESA) has presented the first Dräger Award for Intensive Care Medicine to the Department of Anaesthesiology and Intensive Care Medicine at the Friedrich Schiller University in Jena, Germany.

The award was presented at the Society's annual congress, Euroanaesthesia 2007, in Munich. The 10,000 endowment was donated by Dräger Medical AG & Co. KG.

The award went to the working group studying ventilation-associated lung injury in the Department of Anaesthesiology and Intensive Care Medicine at the University (1).

The Scientific Programme Committee of ESA who judged the prize recognized the working group for their investigation, which was published in the paper, Increased Susceptibility to Ventilator associated Lung Injury Persists after Clinical Recovery from Experimental Endotoxemia (2).

During the opening ceremony, Sir Peter Simpson, President of the ESA, together with Helge Hussy, General Manager of Dräger Medical Deutschland GmbH, presented the award to Dr Lars Hüter, representing the working group.

The prize

This annual prize honours significant research in the field of intensive care medicine published in peer-reviewed intensive care or anaesthesiology journals in the preceding year. The prize is given to the institution that produces the article rather than any one research worker.

The award recipients, Dr Schreiber's working group in Jena, has been conducting experiments for a number of years in the field of ventilation-induced or ventilation-associated lung injury. In complex in-vivo models, the working group has studied the factors and conditions influencing the damaging effects of artificial ventilation (3). Clinically relevant situations are simulated, with the study concentrating on the effects of different ventilation parameters (eg tidal volume or PEEP level) on the pulmonary and systemic inflammatory response.

The researchers demonstrated that even after recovery from a transient period of endotoxemia, susceptibility to the deleterious effects of increasing tidal volumes increases over time. This suggests that lower tidal volumes, already known to protect patients with acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) are also of benefit after full clinical recovery from the inflammatory response.

As Chairman of the Dräger Prize Subcommittee, Prof Jennifer M. Hunter
MB ChB PhD FRCA, School of Clinical Science (Anaesthesia), University
of Liverpool, UK, stated that this paper was selected as it showed the
highest standard of scientific study of all the submissions, with results that were most likely to affect future clinical practice.


1. Head of the working group: Dr Torsten Schreiber; members: Dr Lars Hüter, Dr Konrad Schwarzkopf, all of the Hospital for Anaesthesiology and Intensive Care Medicine at the Friedrich Schiller University in Jena and PD Dr Waheedullah Karzai, Deptm. of Anaesthesia, Zentralklinik Bad Berka GmbH.

2. First published in Anesthesiology 2006, 104: 133–41.

3. See:

  • Schreiber T, Hüter L, Gaser E, Schmidt B, Schwarzkopf K, Karzai W. Effects of a catecholamine-induced increase in cardiac output on lung injury after experimental unilateral pulmonary acid instillation. Crit Care Med. 2007 May 22. epub ahead of print;
  • Schreiber T, Swanson PE, Chang KC, Davis CC, Dunne WM, Karl IE, Reinhart K, Hotchkiss RS. Both gram-negative and gram-positive experimental pneumonia induce profound lymphocyte but not respiratory epithelial cell apoptosis. Shock. 2006 Sep; 26(3): 271-6.;
  • Schreiber T., Niemann C., Schmidt B., Karzai W.: A novel model of selective lung ventilation to investigate the long-term effects of ventilation-induced lung injury. Shock. 2006 Jul;26(1):50-4.;
  • Schreiber T, Hüter L, Gaser E, Schmidt B, Schwarzkopf K, Rek H, Karzai W: PEEP has beneficial effects on inflammation in the injured and no deleterious effects on the non-injured lung after unilateral lung acid instillation. Intensive Care Med. 2006 May;32(5):740-9

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