Nirmala Parajuli, PhD

Assistant Professor, Pharmacology and Toxicology

Research Overview

One major challenge for end-stage kidney disease patients (both, pediatric and adult) is shortage of donor kidneys for transplantation. The majority of transplantable kidneys are procured from deceased donors which have to be stored in cold storage solution until a suitable recipient is located. Prolonged cold storage induces renal damage during preservation and further leads to poor outcome after transplantation. More than 25% of deceased donor kidneys are discarded annually to avoid risk of poor transplant outcome, just because these kidneys are stored for a prolonged period of time in cold storage solution. Dr. Parajuli's long-term goal is to develop therapeutic strategies to reduce the cold storage (CS)-induced damage during preservation as well as prolong the viability of these kidneys after transplantation. To accomplish this she is focusing on identifying the CS related pathways that are responsible for inducing renal damage following transplantation using a rat kidney CS plus transplant model, which has been established in her laboratory. Specifically, she is investigating the roles of molecular chaperone (Hsp70), complement system, and protein degradation pathway during cold storage followed by transplantation. The hypothesis is that malfunction of Hsp70 results in complement activation and proteasome dysfunction during cold storage and transplantation, both lead to exacerbate renal damage. Currently, she is  investigating the role of Hsp70 on complement activation and proteasome function following CS plus transplantation (pharmacologic approach) and further assessing how these pathways converge to exacerbate renal damage using our established rat transplant model.

View a complete list of Dr. Parajuli's published work in MyBibliography