Two New UAMS Researchers Win Funding for Asthma, Cardiovascular Studies

By Nate Hinkel

The pair of new investigators was selected from a competitive pool of applicants this summer. Kennedy is striving to reduce asthma-related hospitalizations by reducing the exacerbating effects of cold viruses on asthma. Price is studying promising genetic predictors that he hopes will help doctors prescribe the right cardiovascular medicines for their patients.

The prestigious national KL2 program supports promising new researchers to advance their research so they can compete for more sustained federal funding.

“We had an excellent group of applicants and we are excited to have Dr. Kennedy and Dr. Price as our 2013 KL2 Scholars,” said Curtis Lowery, M.D., director of the Translational Research Institute and principal investigator for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) that supports the KL2 Scholar program. “We hope the KL2 Award will help jumpstart their research careers and put them on a path toward sustained NIH funding to further their research.”

Kennedy and Price are among 13 KL2 Award recipients selected by the Translational Research Institute since 2010. The award helps them quickly develop their research programs with 75 percent salary support (up to $52,000 a year) that allows dedicated time to their research. They receive up to $25,000 a year in research funds, as well as travel funds, graduate-level tuition support, and assistance from mentors.

Price earned his Doctor of Pharmacy degree from Florida A&M University in Tallahassee and his doctorate in clinical pharmaceutical sciences from the University of Florida in Gainesville.

Kennedy, a Hot Springs native, is an internal medicine and pediatrics physician who earned his medical degree and completed residency training at UAMS. He joined the UAMS faculty in July after completing his allergy and immunology fellowship at the University of Virginia.

UAMS is the state's only health sciences university, with colleges of Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy, Health Professions and Public Health; a graduate school; hospital; a main campus in Little Rock; a Northwest Arkansas regional campus in Fayetteville; a statewide network of regional campuses; and seven institutes: the Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute, Jackson T. Stephens Spine & Neurosciences Institute, Harvey & Bernice Jones Eye Institute, Psychiatric Research Institute, Donald W. Reynolds Institute on Aging, Translational Research Institute and Institute for Digital Health & Innovation. UAMS includes UAMS Health, a statewide health system that encompasses all of UAMS' clinical enterprise including its hospital, regional clinics and clinics it operates or staffs in cooperation with other providers. UAMS is the only adult Level 1 trauma center in the state. U.S. News & World Report recognized UAMS Medical Center as a Best Hospital for 2021-22; ranked its ear, nose and throat program among the top 50 nationwide for the third year; and named five areas as high performing — colon cancer surgery, diabetes, hip replacement, knee replacement and stroke. Forbes magazine ranked UAMS as seventh in the nation on its Best Employers for Diversity list. UAMS also ranked in the top 30% nationwide on Forbes’ Best Employers for Women list and was the only Arkansas employer included. UAMS has 2,876 students, 898 medical residents and six dental residents. It is the state's largest public employer with more than 10,000 employees, including 1,200 physicians who provide care to patients at UAMS, its regional campuses, Arkansas Children's, the VA Medical Center and Baptist Health. Visit or Find us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube or Instagram.