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Organ and Tissue Transplantation
Chief, Transplantation Section
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases
Sept. 19, 2000 7 pm
Masur AuditoriumNIH Clinical Center
For some patients, an organ
or tissue transplant means the difference between life and death. Even after
their operations, however, these patients face another danger: tissue rejection.
Patients often need high doses of immunosuppressive drugs to prevent their bodies
from rejecting their new tissues. But the unpleasant side effects of these drugs
may cause patients to stop taking them, virtually ensuring tissue rejection.
Dr. Allan D. Kirk, a surgeon
and specialist in transplantation, will speak about new ways to improve the
success of organ and tissue transplantation. He began his undergraduate work
at Boston University's School of Fine Arts and finished it at Old Dominion University's
School of Sciences and Health Professions, earning a Bachelor of Science. He
went on to Duke University, where he earned his medical degree and a doctorate
in immunology. Dr. Kirk joined the United States Navy in 1983 with an Armed
Forces Health Professions Scholarship. Currently, he serves as a Commander in
the Medical Corps of the Naval Reserves. He did his internship and residency
in surgery at Duke University, becoming its Chief Resident in Surgery. Later,
he traveled to the University of Wisconsin, where he was a Fellow in Transplantation
and a research scientist. Dr. Kirk continues his affiliation there as a Visiting
Assistant Professor of Surgery.
Since 1997, he has served
as a principal investigator with the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda,
Maryland and as an attending surgeon with the Organ Transplant Service at Walter
Reed Army Medical Center. In May 1999, he joined NIH as Chief of the Transplantation
Section in the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases
(NIDDK). Dr. Kirk is the primary transplant surgeon for clinical trials being
planned in the new NIH Organ/Tissue Transplant Research Center, which opened
in Spring 1999 in the Clinical Center. Together with researchers from the National
Naval Medical Center, NIDDK, and Walter Reed Army Medical Center, he spearheads
efforts to permit transplantation without chronic immunosup-pression.
Dr. Kirk has authored or
coauthored articles and book chapters on surgery and transplantation, and is
a frequently invited lecturer at scientific symposia. He is a diplomate of the
American Board of Surgery and an elected member of the American Society of Transplant
Surgeons, American Society of Transplant Physicians, and Transplantation Society.
Central to his work is the belief that tissue rejection can be reduced, so that
patients need fewer immunosuppressive drugs and can enjoy more trouble-free
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