Dr. Bowers attended medical school at the University of Oregon and did an internship at the University of Washington. He then studied biochemistry at Cornell University and attended the Postgraduate School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. From 1961-2004 he was the director of the Section of Endocrinology & Metabolism in the Department of Medicine at Tulane University School of Medicine. Dr. Bowers has served on the editorial board of several endocrine journals, was a member of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases Study Section for eight years and has written over 400 articles in peer reviewed journals including chapters in books and over 200 abstracts.
Some noteworthy accomplishments include the development of TRH analogs, LHRH antagonists and the development of a new class of small synthetic peptides (GHRPs, growth hormone releasing peptides) that specifically release growth hormone in animals and humans. In 1969, the Van Meter Award was given to Drs. Bowers, Schally and Folkers for the isolation and identification of TRH. The work on TRH strongly supported that additional hypothalamic releasing hormones would be discovered which was accomplished within the next 2 years with the discovery of LHRH by Dr. Schally’s group and others followed in subsequent years. In 1998 he received the Monsanto Clinical Investigator Award from the Endocrine Society in recognition of his contribution in the field of hypothalamic hormones and his discovery of the GHRP pathway and its clinical and therapeutic importance.
Some of Dr. Bowers’ current and future objectives include development of 1) ghrelin receptor agonists for undernutrition, i.e., cancer, cachexia, starvation; 2) ghrelin receptor antagonists for overnutrition, i.e., obesity; 3) use of ghrelin agonists in diabetes; 4) use of ghrelin agonists to restore normal function of the GH-IGF-I axis in older men and women; 5)intranasal and long acting delivery systems for ghrelin agonists/antagonists, and to obtain licenses and funds for development of the ghrelin agonists/antagonists as well as for a completed Phase I LHRH antagonist.
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