Klearchos K. Papas, PhD

Professor, Surgery
Professor, Medical Imaging
Director of the Institute for Cellular Transplantation

Dr. Papas has spent the past 21 years of his research career studying the properties of insulin-secreting tissue and their relationship to viability and function. He has worked on the development and validation of assays (especially ones based on mitochondrial function such as oxygen consumption rate) for the real-time, objective assessment of islet quality prior to transplantation. In particular the assay based on oxygen consumption rate has been recently validated based on its ability to predict diabetes reversal in mice and clinical human islet auto transplants in patients with chronic pancreatitis. He has used these assays along with engineering principles to optimize the islet transplantation process from pancreas procurement to islet infusion to the recipient. His group has also developed tools for the real time non-invasive assessment of pancreases and other organs during preservation, and is actively involved in research for improvements in organ preservation technology aiming at extending the allowable time window from procurement to transplantation and the utilization of organs from expanded criteria donors without compromising clinical outcomes. He has had continuous NIH funding for the past 7 years in the area of pancreas preservation and he has spearheaded the effort for the development of humidified oxygen gas perfusion (persufflation) of the pancreas using novel technology for portable in situ oxygen generation from water via electrochemistry. He is also actively collaborating with leaders in the liquid perfusion field on NIH sponsored projects aiming at improving oxygenation. His research in this area has the potential to have a profound impact on reducing overall costs, increasing availability, and improving short-and long-term outcomes in solid organ transplantation.

  • MS: Georgia Institute of Technology, Chemical Engineering, Atlanta, GA , 1992
  • PhD: Georgia Institute of Technology, Chemical Engineering, Atlanta, GA, 1996,
  • Post Doc Invited Researcher, National Institute of Advanced Interdisciplinary Research, Tsukuba, Ibaraki, Japan, 1996
  • Post Doc in Analytics/BioNMR, Novartis Pharmaceuticals, Summit, NJ, 1996-1999