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Novel therapies to avoid brain and kidney injury arising from heart surgery and during sepsis

Associate Professor Yugeesh Lankadeva, Institution: The University of Melbourne

2021 Future Leader Fellowship 

Years funded: 2022-2025

Each year ~2 million people worldwide undergo heart surgery requiring a heart-lung machine, which causes brain injury in ~50% of patients and kidney injury in ~30% of patients. Each year ~49 million people globally are diagnosed with severe infections (sepsis), which causes brain injury in ~70% of patients and kidney injury in ~50% of patients. Associate Professor Yugeesh Lankadeva's project offers solutions to these major unresolved life-threatening health issues.

Associate Professor Yugeesh Lankadeva was pivotal in developing the world’s first clinically relevant large animal models where blood flow and oxygen levels can be continually assessed in the brain and kidneys before, during and after heart surgery or sepsis. Associate Professor Yugeesh Lankadeva's vision is to deconstruct the pathological changes occurring within the brain and kidneys during heart surgery and sepsis, and then test the safety and efficacy of novel mechanism-guided therapies for future clinical use. This would represent a true breakthrough in our ability to avoid brain and kidney injury arising from heart surgery and sepsis, and greatly improve health outcomes for patients.

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