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Kidney Transplant program

Transplant research

Thank you volunteers!

We would like to sincerely thank all of the patients who have helped us to explore new ideas and approaches to chronic kidney disease and kidney transplant over the years. We are constantly working to improve outcomes and the experience for patients with kidney disease.

Research program update

We are currently involved in research studies focusing on chronic kidney disease and kidney transplant. The kidney transplant study doctors, also known as study investigators, include Dr. Ramesh Prasad, Dr. Darren Yuen and Dr. Jeffrey Zaltzman. We have been working on an exciting group of studies this past year, along with some new studies that will be rolling out in the next few months. Below we have provided a basic introduction to some of the current types of studies in the Transplant Program. The studies are identified by their simple or short title.

MRI studiesMRI studies

DGF MRI study, DWI MRI study, RTF MRI study

The goal of these studies is to use information obtained by MRI (magentic resonance imaging) to help us understand kidney damage related to scarring or fibrosis.

Laboratory studiesLaboratory studies

Cross-sectional studies: AMINODAT study, ANEMIAT study

The goal of these studies is to look for unique laboratory biomarkers at a single study visit that may help us to better understand diabetes and anemia after kidney transplantation.

Prospective studies: UHN QFT CMV study

The goal of this study is to see if a specific lab test that is drawn at different study visits can help guide medical decisions related to CMV prophylaxis medications after kidney transplant. Cytomegalovirus or CMV is a common cause of infection in patients who have undergone a transplant.

Questionnaire studies


The goal of this study is to help learn more about potential barriers to living donation using questionnaires completed at different points in time in the transplant work-up process.

Clinical studiesClinical studies

REGIFT study, ZOSTER 041 study, FKC014 study, BK KIDNI study

Clinical trials use formal, organized research methods to learn more about a topic, and allow conclusions to be made about a topic by comparing different groups in a controlled way. The goal of clinical trials includes testing new medications in development to see how well they work and to see if they are safe.

Patient research contact list

If you would like to receive information directly from the research team about upcoming studies, let any of the clinical program staff know or feel free to contact the kidney research team directly at the numbers listed below. Signing up for the research contact list does not mean that you are agreeing to participate in any studies - it just means that you agree to receive information about research directly from the research team. This is entirely voluntary and you can remove your name from the research contact list at any time. You will also be able to learn about research opportunities from your clinical team, ads in the waiting room and patient publications (i.e. newsletter).

St. Michael’s Hospital Kidney Research Team
Research manager Michelle Nash 416-867-3692
Research coordinator Lindita Rapi 416-867-7460 ext 8024
Research unit coordinator Niki Dacouris 416-864-6060 ext 3225
Research assistant Weiqiu Yuan 416-867-7460 ext 8409

Patient oriented researchPatient oriented research

We are working to find ways to involve patients in the research process and to get information that has been learned from research back to the kidney transplant patient community. We would also like to get feedback on what we are doing well, and what we could improve within the research program.

We’re planning to post more information about studies that are currently active as well as to post links to articles that have been published by our team.

If you have any ideas for research, for this webpage, any suggestions for general improvement or would be interested in being contacted for your feedback on different initiatives as they are developed, please contact Michelle Nash at 416-867-3692 or

More information about Canada’s Strategy for Patient Oriented Research

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“Transplant research allows us to improve patient care, to learn how to do things better, and sometimes, to tell us that something isn’t working the way we thought it was. Research results are routinely used in the transplant clinic, whether it’s making decisions about the types of tests to be ordered or requesting a newly available treatment. But all of this research relies on patient participation, and our team is dedicated to ensuring that patients feel empowered to make the best decisions for themselves when it comes to participating in research. We work hard to guide our research participants through the studies they’re participating in, to make sure that the process is as safe and convenient as possible. It’s incredibly rewarding when we get to meet with our patients to help them learn more about the studies we’re conducting. At the end of the day, we couldn’t make progress without them, and our whole team is incredibly grateful and always appreciative of their generous support.” ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Michelle Nash is the research program manager for the kidney research team at St. Michael’s Hospital. Part of the Kidney Transplant Program, the team is comprised of research investigators, research coordinators, research assistants, and many research volunteers and interns. Pictured above, from left to right, are Niki Dacouris, research coordinator; Michelle Nash, research program manager; Dr. Ramesh Prasad, research investigator and kidney transplant program director; Tiffany Thai, research intern; Karan Vansjalia, research volunteer; Dr. Jeff Zaltzman, research investigator and medical director of the diabetes comprehensive care program; Lindita Rapi, research coordinator; and Weiqiu Yuan, research assistant. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ This year, the kidney transplant program celebrates its 50th anniversary, and our staff and patients are celebrating with us. Share your transplant story using #MyTXanniversary, and register to be an organ donor: (link also in bio). ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ #BeADonor #DONORnation

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