Thomas Perls, MD, MPH, a geriatrician at Boston Medical Center (BMC) and professor of medicine at Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM), has been honored with the Ewald W. Busse Research Award. One of the most prestigious in the field of gerontological research, the award is given every four years in conjunction with the World Congress of Gerontology and Geriatrics in Seoul, Korea.
The award recognizes the achievements of late junior or mid-career scientists, encouraging their continued contributions to aging research. Perls presented a lecture based on his research and received a certificate and a $6,000 award.
The award is named after Ewald W. Busse, MD, one of the world’s foremost authorities on human aging and a founder of the field of geriatric psychiatry. He was founding director of the Duke Center for the Study of Aging and Human Development. This award is supported by an endowment made by Gerontology International in honor of Busse.
“I’m honored to receive this award. My hope is that this tremendous recognition will help spread awareness about the importance of research in healthy aging,” said Perls.
Perls has dedicated much of his career to deciphering the genetic and environmental factors that contribute to exceptional longevity. He is the director of the New England Centenarian Study (NECS) at BMC, the largest study of centenarians and their families in the world, as well as a principal investigator of the National Institute on Aging’s Long Life Family Study.
The recipient of numerous honors and grants for his work on aging, Perls co-authored the award-winning book, Living to 100: Lessons in Living to Your Maximum Potential At Any Age. He has appeared on the Today Show, NBC’s Dateline, CNN, NPR and the BBC and his work has been featured in the New York Times, Newsweek and The Wall Street Journal. In addition, he served as an issue expert at the 1995 and 2005 White House Conferences on Aging.
Perls earned his medical degree from the University of Rochester School of Medicine and completed his residency and internship in internal medicine at the Harbor-UCLA Medical Center. He completed his geriatrics fellowship at Harvard Medical School and his master’s degree from the Harvard School of Public Health.