EACPT Lifetime Achievement Award 2009 to Folke Sjöqvist
The European Association for Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics has granted its first Award for Lifetime Achievement in Clinical Pharmacology to Dr. Folke Sjöqvist, Professor emeritus of Clinical Pharmacology and past chairman of the Department of Medical Laboratory Sciences and Technology at the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, Sweden. Dr. Sjöqvist belongs to the most prestigious individuals in the discipline of clinical pharmacology and his high reputation is widely recognized in our scientific community and beyond.
He was born in 1933 in Västerwik, Sweden. After the study of medicine he jointed the department of pharmacology of the Karolinska Institute in 1956 and received his Swedish MD in 1962. From 1963 -1965 he was visiting scientist at the N.I.H. in Bethesda, MD., U.S.A. and fellow at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in Baltimore, ML. He turned back to Stockholm and was appointed in 1970 as the first chair of clinical pharmacology and therapeutics in Linköpping, and then became the long-lasting chair of clinical pharmacology in Huddinge, Stockholm for 28 years from 1973-2001.
Folke Sjöqvistintroduced the concept of therapeutic drug monitoring in the field of antidepressants based on the observation that the polymorphic debrisoquine hydroxylase activity governs the metabolism of some major antidepressive drugs. These important findings on drug metabolism led to a significant improvement of pharmacotherapy in psychiatry and other disciplines and encouraged the implementation of pharmacogenetics and individualized medicine into Clinical Pharmacology. His large number of publications has been cited more than 12,000 times with an average 57 per paper.
His outstanding capacity as scientist has also been proven in a large number of functions in research committees, learned societies and – most prestigious - as former member of the Nobel Committee, responsible for the Nobel Prize in Physiology and Medicine. Folke’s tremendous efforts to advocate Clinical Pharmacology as medical discipline are mirrored in the foundation of the European Association of Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics and was elected as Chairman from 1993-1999. Thereafter, Folke acted as chairman of the Division of Clinical Pharmacology of IUPHAR over two periods from 1994 to 2002. Now he is responsible for the liaison of IUPHAR with the WHO and highly active in many other aspects. Finally Prof Sjöqvist was honoured with a tremendous number of awards, just to name five honorary doctors and one honorary professor degrees.
EACPT congratulates to this prestigious price and is proud, to have Folke Sjöqvist as the first laureate.