The German Society of Digestive and Metabolic Disease awarded Dr. Camilleri with the 2012 Ismar Boas medal in honor of his scientific contributions to the understanding of the integrated regulation of the gastrointestinal tract. In particular, his pioneering work on the causes of motor and functional disorders. Dr. Camilleri's research into the complex interaction of genetic, mucosal, enteroendocrine, immunological and neuronal mechanisms helped to develop important modern concepts about changes in body function, and therefore forms the basis of modern, causal therapies.
Two other Mayo Clinic physicians have been awarded with the Ismar Boas Medal. Eugene DiMagno, M.D., received the medal in 1994 and Sidney Phillips, M.D., was honored in 2005.
Ismar Boas practiced in Germany prior to World War II and is considered the father of gastroenterology. He studied and published on the stomach, small intestines, and constipation. He started a medical journal dedicated to gastroenterology and metabolic medicine. The journal survives today under the name Digestion.
Also at this year's meeting of the German Society of Digestive and Metabolic Disease, Emeritus Physician Eugene DiMagno was recognized with the Thannhauser Medal. The medal was given in recognition of his pioneering scientific achievements in the study of regulation of human pancreatic function. Dr. DiMagno's seminal work on deciphering the mechanisms of exocrine pancreatic insufficiency has contributed greatly to the understanding of chronic pancreatic diseases, which is the basis of modern therapeutic strategies.