The American Society of Nephrology Honors Leaders in the Fight Against Kidney Diseases

Educational innovators and preeminent researchers are among the five leaders to be honored at ASN Kidney Week 2018



  • Five leaders in the kidney health community are being honored by the American Society of Nephrology (ASN), the world’s largest organization of kidney disease specialists.
  • The award winners will be honored at ASN Kidney Week, the world’s premier nephrology meeting, where more than 13,000 kidney health professionals from around the world will gather in San Diego, CA from October 23–28.


More than 850 million people worldwide are affected by kidney diseases, including roughly 40 million Americans.


Washington, DC. (October 22, 2018)—The American Society of Nephrology (ASN) will honor five leaders in the fight against kidney diseases during the society’s annual meeting, ASN Kidney Week 2018, held October 23–28 at the San Diego Convention Center in San Diego, CA.

Nancy Day AdamsRobert G. Narins Award

Nancy Day Adams, MD will be presented with this year’s Robert G. Narins Award. Dr. Adams is a professor emeritus at the University of Connecticut (UConn Health), and until her retirement in 2017, served as Chief of the Division of Nephrology as well as Training Program Director. She also had an active nephrology practice.

Dr. Adams has been awarded numerous honors for excellence in both clinical medicine and teaching. She has received the Upjohn Award for Clinical Excellence from the Medical College of Wisconsin and was voted a Top Doctor from US News and World Report and Connecticut Magazine. She has also received the George Thornton Teaching Award from the Connecticut Chapter of the American College of Physicians, and the Laureate Award from the American College of Physicians. Two of the courses she taught won the CAMEL Award multiple times for best first or second year course for medical and dental students, and she was also an ELAM Fellow for executive leadership in academic medicine.  

Additionally, Dr. Adams has served as Chair of ASN’s Training Program Directors Executive Committee, Chair of the ASN Workforce and Training Committee, and ASN’s Education Director for Fellowship Training. She also led an effort to create the Internal Medicine Subspecialty Milestones Project, which is used by nephrology fellowships during semi-annual performance reviews and helps determine overall progression of nephrology fellows in the Next Accreditation System. 

The Robert G. Narins Award honors individuals who have made substantial and meritorious contributions in education and teaching.  

William G. Couser—John P. Peters Award

William G. Couser, MD, FASN will be awarded the John P. Peters Award for his wide-ranging research, clinical care, and educational contributions to the field of nephrology. Dr. Couser is currently an Affiliate Professor of Medicine in the Division of Nephrology at the University of Washington School of Medicine in Seattle. There he has served as the Belding H. Scribner Professor of Medicine and Head of the Division of Nephrology. He is internationally recognized for his research elucidating disease processes of the kidney, particularly immunologic mechanisms of kidney disease and glomerulonephritis, and has published more than 350 peer-reviewed scientific articles, reviews, and book chapters. He has also served as Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology as well as in other editorial capacities for other top-ranked nephrology publications. 

Dr. Couser has served as president of the two largest nephrology organizations in the world; ASN and the International Society of Nephrology (ISN). Through directing the ISN Global Outreach Programs, he organized educational events in 61 developing countries. He was also instrumental in designating the second Thursday of March each year as World Kidney Day, an event now celebrated in more than 100 countries. His many honors include the National Kidney Foundation’s David Hume Award and the International Federation of Kidney Foundations’ Joel Kopple Award. He has also won several teaching awards.

The John P. Peters Award recognizes individuals who have made substantial research contributions to the discipline of nephrology and have sustained achievements in one or more domains of academic medicine including clinical care, education, and leadership.


John T. DaugirdasBelding H. Scribner Award

John T. Daugirdas, MD, FASN will be honored with the Belding H. Scribner Award for his outstanding contributions to the care of patients with kidney disease and his rigorous scientific approach to better understand and solve problems pertaining to dialysis care. He is Clinical Professor of Medicine in the Division of Nephrology and Hypertension at the University of Illinois at Chicago, where he has received the Chicago Top Doctor Award for multiple years.

Dr. Daugirdas’ work in dialysis has focused on measuring dialysis adequacy and the causes of dialysis hypotension. He has published more than 250 papers, mostly pertaining to these two areas, and proposed simplified methods for checking hemodialysis adequacy that are now in wide use. He was involved in the NIH-funded HEMO Trial and the Frequent Hemodialysis Network Trials, and contributed to the design of the Chronic Renal Insufficiency Cohort Trial. He has a special interest in nutrition as it applies to chronic kidney disease and phosphorus balance. 

Dr. Daugirdas coedited the Handbook of Dialysis, a guide published in more than a dozen languages that nephrologists around the world have relied upon to help care for dialysis patients. He also founded the web journal, Hypertension, Dialysis and Clinical Nephrology, and has served on the editorial boards of various nephrology journals. He is currently editor of Hemodialysis International.

The Belding H. Scribner Award is presented annually to one or more individuals who have made outstanding contributions that have a direct impact on the care of patients with renal disorders or have substantially changed the clinical practice of nephrology.


  1. Amin Arnaout—Homer W. Smith Award
  2. Amin Arnaout, MD, FASN will be presented this year’s Homer W. Smith Award, recognizing his outstanding contributions to understanding how kidneys function in normal and diseased states. A Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, Principal Investigator at the Harvard Stem Cell Institute, physician and Chief emeritus of the Division of Nephrology at Massachusetts General Hospital, Dr. Arnaout has made seminal contributions to basic and translational medical research for more than three decades and has published more than 200 articles.


Dr. Arnaout’s discovery and structure determination of leukocyte adhesion receptors, known as integrins, formed the foundation for development of new anti-inflammatory, anti-thrombosis, and anti-fibrosis drugs for treating common diseases affecting various organs. He has also elucidated the autoantibody nature of C3 nephritic factor, revealed the molecular basis of hemodialysis leukopenia, identified neutrophil proteinase 3 as the target antigen of cytoplasmic antineutrophil cytoplasmic antibodies (c-ANCA), elucidated the role of polycystin 1 in the vasculopathy of autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease, and developed a microfluidic kidney proximal tubule-on-chip device.

Dr. Arnaout has served on various committees at ASN as well as on the council of the International Society of Nephrology (ISN) and on study sections at the National Institutes of Health. His many accolades include the NIH Young Investigator Award, the American Heart Established Investigator Award, ISN Donald Seldin Lectureship Awards, and the 2017 Kuwait Prize in science.   

The Homer W. Smith Award is presented annually to an individual who has made outstanding contributions which fundamentally affect the science of nephrology, broadly defined, but not limited to, the pathobiology, cellular and molecular mechanisms, and genetic influences on the functions and diseases of the kidney.


Morgan GramsASNAHA Donald W. Seldin Young Investigator Award

Morgan Grams, MD, PhD, MHS will be presented with this year’s  Donald W. Seldin Young Investigator Award cosponsored by ASN and the American Heart Association Council on the Kidney in Cardiovascular Disease for her innovative work with multidimensional data to develop clinically relevant tools and indicators. Her work has had a direct impact on improving the management of kidney disease. She is a clinically active nephrologist and Associate Professor with joint appointments in the Departments of Medicine and Epidemiology at Johns Hopkins University. She has published over 150 scientific papers and leads several NIH grants, including a role as co-principal investigator of the Chronic Kidney Disease Prognosis Consortium, an 11-million participant global consortium with a coordinating center at Johns Hopkins.

Dr. Grams’ research centers on epidemiological approaches to optimizing interventions and preventing complications in chronic kidney disease.

This award was previously known as the ASN–AHA Young Investigator Award, but was renamed after acclaimed nephrologist, Donald W. Seldin, MD, who passed away this year. 

The ASN-AHA Donald W. Seldin Young Investigator Award is presented annually to an individual with an outstanding record of achievement and creativity in basic patient-oriented research related to the function and diseases of the kidney.


About ASN Kidney Week 2018

ASN Kidney Week 2018, the largest nephrology meeting of its kind, will provide a forum for more than 13,000 professionals to discuss the latest findings in kidney health research and engage in educational sessions related to advances in the care of patients with kidney and related disorders. Kidney Week 2018 will take place October 23 – October 28 at the San Diego Convention Center.


About the American Society of Nephrology

Since 1966, ASN has been leading the fight to prevent, treat, and cure kidney diseases throughout the world by educating health professionals and scientists, advancing research and innovation, communicating new knowledge, and advocating for the highest quality care for patients. ASN has more than 20,000 members representing 131 countries. For more information, please visit