The Society for Nuclear Medicine (SNM) has created an annual award named for Michael J. Welch, Ph.D., professor of radiology, of developmental biology and of chemistry at the School of Medicine.
Welch, who specializes in the synthesis of new radioactive chemicals for medical imaging, is head of the Radiochemistry Laboratory Institute at the Mallinckrodt Institute of Radiology and a member of the Senior Leadership Committee of the Siteman Cancer Center. Over the course of more than 40 years at the School of Medicine, he has developed imaging agents for use in a wide variety of medical contexts. He focuses his research on agents that can help researchers better understand the connections between diabetes and heart disease.
The Michael J. Welch Award, created by the Radiopharmaceutical Sciences Council (RPSC) of the SNM, will be given annually for outstanding work in the field. It includes a $1,000 honorarium.
RPSC president Robert H. Mach, Ph.D., professor of radiology, of cell biology and physiology, and of biochemistry and molecular biophysics at the School of Medicine, said that the RPSC had been debating for several years about whom to name the award for.
"We had a difficult time deciding on the most appropriate honoree until we detailed all the criteria the honoree needed to meet," he said. "Then it became apparent to everyone that Michael J. Welch was our most deserving member, the one researcher who unreservedly met all the criteria."