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Campaign to create an endowed chair in honor of Dr. Swartz

Swartz groupIn celebration of a friend, colleague and mentor, over fifty nephrologists gathered at the Harbor House restaurant in San Diego to pay tribute to Dr. Richard Swartz and to kick off the Division of Nephrology's campaign to create an endowed chair in his honor. Dr. Swartz has been a highly respected member of the faculty for over 30 years, training many young nephrologists along the way. Guests at the dinner included current fellows, alumni, faculty and even two of Dr. Swartz's mentors from Boston who unanimously recognized Rick's tireless commitment and passion.

Drs. Kissner / Swartz / SegalThe Richard D. Swartz, M.D. Collegiate Professorship in Nephrology will honor Rick's contributions to the field of medicine and will provide funding for a series of nephrology faculty members to focus on developing new methods for treating patients and shaping fellows into the outstanding clinicians of tomorrow. For more information about the campaign to endow this chair, please contact John Perry in the Development Office at (734) 998-7624.

Dr. Kretzler receives 2009 ASN Young Investigator Award

Dr Kretzler - Award 1Dr. Matthias Kretzler is the recipient of this year's American Society of Nephrology (ASN) Young Investigator Award. This award is one of the most prestigious honors in Nephrology. It is presented annually to an individual with an outstanding record of achievement and creativity in basic or patient-oriented research related to the functions and diseases of the kidney. This award is also co-sponsored by the Council on the Kidney of the American Heart Association. Matthias' award was presented at the ASN annual meeting in San Diego in October of this year and the presentation was followed by a plenary lecture by Dr. Kretzler on his work.

Dr. Kretzler - Award 2

Dr. Kretzler's translational systems biology research has helped establish a new paradigm by which researchers are now approaching the diagnosis and, hopefully soon, the treatment of kidney patients. Dr. Kretzler has amassed a wonderful team of colleagues and researchers around the world to lead his research forward and this team approach is a great example of where nephrology research is moving.

Dr. Kretzler - Award 3



Please join the Division of Nephrology in congratulating Dr. Kretzler on this well-deserved and prestigious award.

Dr. Margolis takes over directorship of the Student Biomedical Research Program

Click here for the November 2008 Student Biomedical Research Program Newsletter, including a letter from new Director, Dr. Ben Margolis.

Click here for more information about the Student Biomedical Research Program.

Nephrology Recognition for Quality Improvement - Lean Project Story Boards

Dialysis Access Care Clinic

Dialysis Access Care Clinic

Decreasing the Cycle Time From Kidney Transplant Evaluation to Deceased Donor Wait Listing, Living Donor Transplant or Transplant Option Ruled Out


Dialysis Access Clinic

Dialysis Access ClinicThe University of Michigan is proud to offer a leading edge, multidisciplinary clinic combining all aspects of dialysis access care in a single clinic, drawing teams from Interventional Nephrology, Interventional Radiology and Transplant Surgery. With the expansion of our procedural efforts in the Interventional Nephrology Unit, it has become clear that these efforts are only part of a truly comprehensive approach to dialysis access care. The nature of the procedures we perform is reactive; either to a dysfunctional dialysis access, or to the urgent lack of dialysis access. In order to achieve a more comprehensive approach, we understood the need to be involved at all levels of access care, particularly at the access planning stage.

The result, in conjunction with Transplant Surgery, is our Combined Dialysis Access Clinic. Our goals are multiple: to improve patient access to dialysis access, to improve continuity of access care, to improve patient education with regard to their accesses, to streamline the evaluation process prior to undergoing access surgery, and to improve communication between Interventional Nephrology, Surgery and Interventional Radiology.

Patient visits fall into three categories: new referrals for access creation or revision, early postoperative follow up, and late postoperative follow up (for fistulae).

The goal of a roughly two-hour visit is to accomplish all the necessary preoperative evaluation at one time, replacing the previously required several visits necessary prior to surgery. The patient will leave the clinic with a surgery appointment in hand, with, for most cases, a surgery date following in a week or two. Even for the most complicated cases, the time from referral to surgery is significantly decreased. This elevates dialysis access care at the University of Michigan to the cutting edge, and maintains our status as a leader in the community.

We offer ultrasound evaluations and same day venograms. Our access team is available five days a week to serve dialysis patients and can be reached by phone at 734-936-5646 or toll free at 877-MED-INU4 (877-633-4684) from 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. In addition, fax (734-763-3016) and voicemail are available during off hours to leave referral and contact information.

Dr. Ojo appointed Florence E. Bingham Research Professor of Nephrology

We are delighted to announce that Dr. Akinlolu Ojo has been named the Florence E. Bingham Research Professor of Nephrology, the first of Nephrology's endowed chairs.

Bingham Professorship
Left to right: Dr. Chip Brosius (Nephrology Division Chief), Dr. Ojo, Dean Woolliscroft and Dr. Todd

Dr. Ojo joined the University of Michigan Nephrology faculty after a highly successful renal fellowship during which he worked closely with Dr. Fritz Port and received his Ph.D. in Epidemiology from the UM School of Public Health. Dr. Ojo has excelled in many areas of clinical research: including outcomes, epidemiology, clinical trials, and observational cohorts. He has been very well funded during that period and now manages a portfolio that includes 8 NIH funded grants for which he is PI on 4. During this same period, Dr. Ojo has been equally energetic in mentoring his junior colleagues. For this latter work, he was awarded a K24 career development award to provide support for his efforts in mentoring junior clinical faculty and fellows in patient oriented research. During this period he has officially mentored 8 junior faculty and fellows, and has served as unofficial mentor to at least twice as many. In addition to his one-on-one mentoring, Dr. Ojo has initiated a course this year entitled, Introduction to Translational Research, as part of the Michigan Translational Research Seminars for the Michigan Institute for Clinical and Health Research (MICHR). Dr. Ojo sits on the GCRC advisory committee and has been on the IRB for the past 7 years. While he has organized groups from around the country and globe, perhaps his most important organizational achievement has been his success in prompting investigators in Southeast Michigan to recruit African American subjects into clinical studies of chronic kidney disease. African Americans have a disproportionate burden of kidney disease that is often underrepresented in clinical trials.


Dr. Leichtman receives $1.26 million for Paired Donation Program

In January of 2008, Dr. Alan Leichtman from the Division of Nephrology, in collaboration with colleagues from the Department of Surgery and the University of Michigan Transplant Center, was awarded a UMHS Capital Investment Fund grant for $1.26 million to establish a Kidney Paired Donation algorithm at UM.

The Kidney Paired Donation Program makes it possible for donors who are incompatible with an intended kidney transplant recipient to donate to a different patient in need. In exchange for that donation, the original intended recipient receives a kidney from another living kidney donor within the UM Kidney Transplant Program. Several programs nationwide already have systems to promote kidney paired donation. What makes the recently established UM program unique is a next generation approach, which maximizes opportunities for difficult-to-transplant candidates. In April 2008, Dr. Leichtman's team ran its second paired donation computer match, which resulted in the identification of nearly 20 potential new kidney transplants. The next step will be to carefully evaluate each potential recipient and donor candidate for transplant. Dr. Leichtman sees this as becoming an established pathway for those patients otherwise unable to receive a living donor transplant to be transplanted at the University of Michigan. A number of peer institutions have already expressed interest in collaborating.

Drs. Margolis and Hildebrandt highlighted in Medicine at Michigan

The research of Dr. Ben Margolis and Friedhelm Hildebrandt is highlighted in the current Medicine at Michigan article the role of cilia in health and disease. Cilia are common cellular structures that were basically ignored by scientists until just 10 years ago. These kidney researchers are at the forefront of an exciting new field of diseases, "ciliopathies," that include some of the most important and common genetic diseases in the world, such as polycystic kidney disease. Dr. Margolis is a professor of Internal Medicine and Associate Chair for Research for the Department of Medicine, and Dr. Hildebrandt is the Frederick G.L. Huetwell Professor for the Cure and Prevention of Birth Defects, and a professor of pediatrics and of human genetics, and a 2007 Doris Duke Clinical Scientist and Howard Hughes Scholar.

click to view article

Editorial by Dr. Leichtman in the NEJM

Dr. Alan Leichtman's recent editorial in the New England Journal of Medicine discusses new approaches to Immunosuppression for Kidney Transplant Patients.

Dr. Kretzler selected by ALR as 2007-2008 Leadership Circle Sponsored Investigator

Dr. Matthias Kretzler was selected from a pool of very talented investigators as the Alliance for Lupus Research's (ALR) Circle Sponsored Investigator for 2007-2008. His research is leading to completely new ways to diagnose and therefore more effectively treat kidney disease in Lupus patients, and is therefore being recognized as a truly new breakthrough in our approach to this most significant complication of this common disease.

click to view ALR announcement

JCI cover

Dr. Lawrence Holzman's paper (R. Verma et al, "Nephrin ectodomain engagement results in Src Kinase activation, nephrin phosphorylation, Nck recruitment, and actin polymerization," J. Clin. Invest. 116:1346-1359, 2006) is the May 2006 cover of The Journal of Clinical Investigation. The cover shows a false colored electron micrograph of an adult mouse kidney highlighting podocyte foot processes. In the research article, Dr. Holzman and colleagues investigate the signaling of nephrin in regulating cytoskeletal dynamics at the podocyte intercellular junctions.

Dr. Benjamin Margolis' paper (T. Hurd et al, "Direct interaction of two polarity complexes implicated in epithelial tight junction assembly," Nat Cell Biol, 5:137-42, 2003) is featured as a "Hot Paper" in the September 12, 2005, issue of The Scientist, a semi-monthly biomedical science journal that summarizes new and interesting research.


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