I am saddened to have to write this introduction for the Hypertension Proceedings against the horrific backdrop of the events of September 11, 2001. However, the tremendous success of both this year’s annual conference, held a mere 11 days following September 11, and this publication of the Proceedings is a tribute to, not only the human spirit, but also the scientific spirit. I thank all who attended and actively participated. It is heartening to see the individual representation from a multitude of countries and cultures.
This issue of Hypertension contains selected manuscripts based on presentations made at the 55th Annual Fall Conference and Scientific Sessions of the American Heart Association Council for High Blood Pressure Research. The meeting was held in Chicago, Illinois, September 23 through 25, 2001. The conference was preceded by the Workshop on Genetics and Genomics and their Approaches to the Understanding of Mechanisms Involved in Hypertension and Cardiovascular Disease, which was organized by Dr Alberto Nasjletti. The program for the conference included 92 oral presentations and 237 posters that were selected from the submitted abstracts. These presentations, which were judged the best of hypertension research, covered a variety of topics: from genetics, molecular biology, receptors, vascular biology, and signal transduction to clinical hypertension and obesity. Presenters were encouraged to submit manuscripts that would be considered for publication in this proceedings issue of Hypertension. There were 137 manuscripts submitted, and 73 were accepted for publication. Manuscripts were reviewed by two referees and a section editor. Only the manuscripts that were highly meritorious and that required minor or no revision were accepted. Section editors were members of the Publications Committee of the Council for High Blood Pressure Research and included Abraham Aviv, Fernando Elijovich (ad hoc), Toshio Fujita, Kenneth Jamerson, Jose Eduardo Krieger, Daniel Levy, Thomas Lohmeier, Leopoldo Raij, Mohan Raizada, Richard Roman, Donna Wang, Stephanie Watts, and R. Clinton Webb.
I am grateful to these committee members for the time and diligent efforts that they devoted to the evaluation of the submitted manuscripts. I am also grateful to all who served as referees for the manuscripts. In addition, I would like to express my gratitude to Gregory Fink, Scott Supowit, and Ralph Watson, my colleagues at Michigan State University, for their assistance as ad hoc members of the Publications Committee. This rapid publication would not have been possible without the experience, hard work, and encouragement of Dr Edward D. Frohlich, former editor-in-chief of Hypertension. This also required the dedicated support of the editorial staff of Hypertension, Debby K. Smith and Irene S. Hebert. They provided organization, hard work, advice, and diligence, and their efforts are greatly appreciated by the Publications Committee and the authors.
The Council meetings are also the occasion of several invited lectureships and awards. In 2001, Dr L. Gabriel Navar was presented the annual Arthur C. Corcoran Memorial Lecture; Dr Robert Carey received the Council for High Blood Pressure Research Lifetime Achievement Award; Dr Richard A. Birnbaum received the 17th Annual Aventis Pharma Hypertension Research Clinical Fellowship Program Award; Dr Lilach Lerman received the Harry Goldblatt Award; and, Dr Victor Dzau received the Novartis Award for his hypertension research.
We will continue to strive to make this issue of Hypertension a valuable and comprehensive forum that showcases the latest developments and advances in the field of hypertension research. To this end, we will continue to feature full-length, peer-reviewed research articles that are published in a timely manner. Finally, because this is my last year as guest editor, I cannot help but comment on how wonderful this experience has been, and I wish the next guest editor and the Publications Committee as much satisfaction and enjoyment as I have had with this responsibility.