Professor Graciela S. Alarcón, MD, MPH

G S Alarcon

Professor Graciela S. Alarcón, MD, MPH

The University of Alabama at Birmingham, Alabama

Graciela S. Alarcón is the Jane Knight Lowe Chair of Medicine In Rheumatology at the Division of Clinical Immunology and Rheumatology at The University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, Alabama. Professor Alarcón graduated as an MD from Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia in Lima, Perú in 1967, and as Master of Public Health from Johns Hopkins University in 1972. She trained in Rheumatology under Drs. Lawrence Schulman and Alex Townes, in Baltimore, Maryland. Upon her return to Perú she founded the first clinical and teaching Rheumatology Unit at her alma mater. In 1980 she returned to the US and has been in the Faculty at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) since, now as an Emeritus Professor.

For the last 20 years Professor Alarcón has been involved in the study of lupus in minority populations, establishing the LUMINA cohort. The work from this study has contributed to clarifying the role of socioeconomic factors involved in both the course and outcomes of lupus, the importance of lupus in the US Hispanic population, particularly among those with a significant Amerindian ancestry, and the protective role of anti-malarials in retarding the occurrence of damage and in prolonging survival in patients with lupus. Since her retirement in 2009, she has continued to supervise the Latin American LUMINA Fellows that have developed their own cohorts in their country of origin. She has been actively involved in lupus studies at the international level with the work of the SLICC (for Systemic Lupus International Collaborating Clinics) and GLADEL (for Grupo Latino Americano de Estudio del Lupus or Latin-American Group for the Study of Lupus) groups. She is currently a clinical advisor to the Lupus Clinical Trials Consortium in their efforts to constitute a national registry of lupus patients; this effort is privately funded by Rheuminations, Inc. and when recruitment is completed should be constituted by about 2000 patients from the US and Canada.

In 2011, Professor Alarc´n received the Evelyn Hess Award from the Lupus Foundation of America (LFA) in recognition for her studies in lupus and is currently a member of its medical scientific advisory board.



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