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A2CPS Consortium Honored with Golden Neuron Award
Errol Patterson accepting the Golden Neuron Award at the Annual PURPOSE Meeting
Errol Patterson accepts the Golden Neuron Award on behalf of the A2CPS Consortium at the PURPOSE Meeting. (Photo courtesy of Laura Wandner, Ph.D.)

The Acute to Chronic Pain Signatures (A2CPS) Consortium was honored with a Golden Neuron Award for "Best representation and inclusion of persons with pain, and/or their families" for their commitment to ensuring that the voices of people with lived experience are incorporated into the A2CPS study. The Golden Neuron Awards, presented by the NIH PURPOSE (Positively Uniting Researchers of Pain to Opine, Synthesize, & Engage) Network, recognize individuals and collaborations shaping the future of pain research.

The award was presented at the Second Annual PURPOSE Meeting for Pain Researchers. A2CPS patient representative Errol Patterson, J.D., accepted the award on behalf of the consortium. In addition to the consortium award, Patterson and patient representative Dawn Bowles, Ph.D., also received individual awards for their contributions to the study.

In an effort to ensure that people with lived experience contributed to the study from the beginning, Patterson and Bowles were invited to serve as A2CPS program consultants to each offer a patient’s perspective. Patterson, who previously had knee replacement surgery, joined the study as a patient consultant in 2019. Bowles, a cardiovascular disease researcher who underwent thoracic surgery herself, joined A2CPS as a patient representative in 2022.

The patient consultants were very involved in the design of the A2CPS protocols for their respective surgeries and pointed out problems that the study team had not anticipated. For example, in response to their feedback, the Consortium significantly shortened the length of the in-person study protocol, increased participant compensation, and ensured that participants had transportation to the study sites and were reimbursed for parking.

They have also offered feedback on messaging about the program and have suggested ways to improve recruitment, including focusing on the altruistic nature of participation and the chance to be part of a big, paradigm-shifting study. Patterson and Bowles, who are both profiled on the A2CPS For Participants page, have been invaluable to the research project and contributed extensively to the success of the program. For more information on the A2CPS consortium and for details and updates on the study, please visit

This page last reviewed on June 12, 2024