The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons (AAOS) today announced that the 2021 Kappa Delta Elizabeth Winston Lanier Award has been granted to Cytex Therapeutics founders Drs. Farshid Guilak, Bradley Estes and Frank Moutos. The Kappa Delta Awards recognize research in musculoskeletal disease or injury with potential to advance patient care and are the highest awards in the field of orthopaedic research. The aim of their research was developing a way to effectively restore damaged cartilage that leads to osteoarthritis in the hip, knee and other joints in the body. This work led to forming Cytex Therapeutics and development of implants that Cytex plans to take into clinical studies later this year.
The founders issued this joint statement: “We are honored to have our work recognized by Kappa Delta and the AAOS and additionally express our thanks to the many colleagues and co-workers over the years who have contributed to this work. We also thank the National Institutes of Health for its longstanding support of our research, enabling Cytex to bring basic research into the clinic. This has been our objective all along.”
The founders remain involved with Cytex where Dr. Guilak is Executive Chairman, Dr. Estes is President and Dr. Moutos is VP of Technology Development.
According to the AAOS, osteoarthritis or OA is a debilitating and costly disease affecting more than 32 million Americans and totaling approximately $65 billion in direct medical fees annually in the United States.[i] It occurs when the articular cartilage (smooth tissue that covers the end of bones) degenerates, contributing to joint pain. Approximately 2.8 million patients with OA are between the ages of 40-65 and seek medical treatment for hip OA.[ii] [iii]Of these, 840,000 (about 30%) suffer from activity-limiting hip OA, and are typically recommended for hip replacement surgery.
About Cytex Therapeutics
Cytex is a Durham, NC-based private company developing patented products that restore cartilage in arthritic joints. Founded by Drs. Guilak, Estes and Moutos, Cytex plans to conduct First in Human pilot studies later this year in patients diagnosed with femoroacetabular impingement, or FAI, a disorder affecting younger adults and a common cause of hip pain. Cytex is planning studies in additional indications where cartilage damage is part of the clinical picture such as arthritis in the ankle and knee.
About the Kappa Delta AwardsIn 1947, at its golden anniversary, the Kappa Delta Sorority established the Kappa Delta Research Fellowship in Orthopaedics, the first award ever created to honor achievements in the field of orthopaedic research. The first annual award was made available to the Academy in 1949 and presented at the AAOS meeting in 1950. The Kappa Delta Awards have been presented by the Academy to persons who have performed research in orthopaedic surgery that is of high significance and impact. The sorority has since added two more awards named for the sorority national past presidents: Elizabeth Winston Lanier, and Ann Doner Vaugh. For more information about the KD awards, please visit aaos.org/kappadelta.
About the AAOS
With more than 39,000 members, the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons is the world’s largest medical association of musculoskeletal specialists. The AAOS is the trusted leader in advancing musculoskeletal health. It provides the highest quality, most comprehensive education to help orthopaedic surgeons and allied health professionals at every career level best treat patients in their daily practices.
[i] United States Bone and Joint Initiative. The Burden of Musculoskeletal Diseases in the United States (BMUS). In: In. Fourth ed. Rosemont, IL. 2018: Available at https://www.boneandjointburden.org/fourth-edition.
[ii] Gunther KP, Puhl W, Brenner H, et al. 2002. [Clinical epidemiology of hip and knee joint arthroses: an overview of the results of the “Ulm Osteoarthrosis Study”]. Z Rheumatol 61:244-249.
[iii] Gunther KP, Sturmer T, Sauerland S, et al. 1998. Prevalence of generalised osteoarthritis in patients with advanced hip and knee osteoarthritis: the Ulm Osteoarthritis Study. Ann Rheum Dis 57:717-723.