Our lab, led by an anesthesiologist and transplant surgeon, is uniquely positioned to investigate issues relevant to ischemic organ injury, which occurs when the blood supply to an organ is either partially or totally cut off. Our goal is to translate these findings through clinical trials with a view towards rapidly improving medical and surgical techniques. Our findings in the lab inform our work in the clinic and our clinical trials provide us with data that informs future research in the lab. All of these will result in improved outcomes for patients.
As two examples of this kind of research, we have found that mild hypothermia is extremely beneficial at ameliorating ischemia-reperfusion injury of the liver, even in fatty livers which are exceedingly susceptible to ischemic injury. We have also found that high blood sugar is can greatly exacerbate ischemic injury of the kidney. Both of these findings may have an immediate impact on how we deal with ischemia of the liver or of the kidney in a variety of settings, including vascular, urologic, oncologic and transplant surgery.