Center for Critical Care Nephrology


The Center for Critical Care Nephrology is an interdisciplinary research center with the goal of developing novel treatments and disruptive innovations to prevent, manage, and cure acute disorders of kidney function, as well as fluid and electrolyte balance, in critically ill patients. The Center’s diverse faculty and staff conduct basic, translational, and clinical research under these themes:

  • Acute kidney injury
  • Sepsis
  • Acute organ failure and organ support
  • Organ donor management
  • Biomarkers and blood purification

Primary Faculty

  • David Emlet, PhD
  • Dana Fuhrman, DO
  • Hernando Gómez, MD
  • Emily Joyce, MD
  • Raghavan Murugan, MD
  • Xiaoyan Wen, MD, PhD

Center Staff

  • Faye Cotton, Project Coordinator
  • Michele Elder, Operations Manager
  • Alicia Frank, Lab Technician
  • Karen Nieri, Executive Administrative Assistant
  • Priyanka Priyanka, Statistical Analyst
  • Ali Smith, Assistant Project Manager

Visiting Scholars and Trainees

  • Salik Aleem, MD
  • Ayham Bataineh, MD
  • Huiwen Chen, MD
  • Adam DeDionisio, BS
  • Gaspar DelRio, MD
  • Robert Edgar, MA
  • Cassandra Formeck, MD
  • Carlos Manrique, MD
  • Sadudee Peerapornratana, MD, MSc
  • Lin Shi, MBBS
  • Siddharth Verma, MD

Phenotyping Renal Cases in Sepsis and Surgery for Early Acute Kidney Injury (PReCISE AKI)
This project studies whether biopsy findings predict patients at high risk for developing new or progressive CKD after an episode of acute kidney injury (AKI). It will relate biopsy findings to recovery status at various time points. Funding: NIDDK, UG3DK114861 (PI: Kellum)

The Role of Glycocalyx Shedding and Platelet Adhesion in Sepsis-induced Microvascular Dysfunction  
This study aims to investigate potential novel mechanisms involved in the development of sepsis-induced AKI. Funding: Vascular Medicine Institute University of Pittsburgh (PI: Gómez)

The Role of Energy Regulation in the Epithelial Cell Response to Sepsis and the Origin of Multiple Organ Dysfunction
To understand the role of energy regulation in the epithelial cell response to sepsis, and to determine the extent to which manipulation of energy regulatory pathways alters the course of sepsis-induced organ dysfunction. Funding: NIGMS, K08-GM117310 (PI: Gómez)

Biomarker Effectiveness Analysis in Contrast Nephropathy (BEACON)
The main objective of this proposal is to advance National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive Kidney Disease's mission of early detection, risk-stratification, and prognostication of contrast-induced AKI. It will provide new scientific knowledge on using biomarkers to monitor patients undergoing angiography and will have a high impact on clinical practice, physicians, and policy makers. Funding: NIDDK, R01DK106256 (PI: Murugan)

Protocolized Goal-directed Resuscitation of Septic Shock to Prevent AKI (ProGReSS AKI)
The goal of this project is to examine the natural history of AKI arising in patients with sepsis. Sepsis is found in more than 50% of critically ill patients with AKI. Funding: NIDDK, R01DK083961 (PI: Kellum)

Inflammation Phenotypes in Pediatric Sepsis Induced Multiple Organ Failure (PHENOMS)
Presently, we direct therapy to killing the germ and supporting organ function while ignoring inflammation. Our study will document whether inflammation is related to failing organs, which will provide evidence for a paradigm shift to investigate use of inflammation-directed therapies to reduce child morbidity and mortality from sepsis. Funding: NIGMS, R01-GM108618 (PI: Carcillo)

The Center for Critical Care Nephrology also has a broad portfolio of industry-funded research collaborations.

For information on activities at the Center for Critical Care Nephrology or to inquire about collaborations and training opportunities, please contact mie1 [at] (Michele Elder), Operations Manager.



Center Director

John A. Kellum, MD, MCCM
Professor of Critical Care Medicine, Medicine, Bioengineering, and Clinical & Translational Science


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