August 3, 1994
Media Contact:Gary Stephenson
Phone: (410) 955-5384
Two Johns Hopkins medical researchers, Harry C., Dietz, M.D., and Clair A. Francomano, M.D., have been given the National Marfan Foundation's prestigious Antoine Marfan Award in recognition of their contributions to the discovery of the cause of the Marfan syndrome and the application of molecular biology to its diagnosis.
They were part of the Johns Hopkins-Portland (Ore.) Shriners Hospital research team which confirmed that a gene responsible for making a connective tissue protein also is responsible for Marfan syndrome. Dietz was lead author of the 1991 study and Francomano provided scientific guidance. The finding had immediate use in early diagnosis in patients and in prenatal diagnosis.