Home » Uncategorized » Duke Heart Highlights of the Week – December 8th 2019

Duke Heart Highlights of the Week – December 8th 2019

Doctors at Duke University Hospital Perform First DCD Heart Transplant in U.S.

A heart transplant team at Duke University Hospital became the first in the U.S. to transplant an adult heart into a recipient through a process known as Donation after Circulatory Death, or DCD.

Duke is one of five centers in the United States that has been approved to perform DCD heart transplants as part of a recently launched clinical trial of a device to circulate warm, oxygenated blood through organs.

Traditionally, heart donations have depended on a declaration of brain death. Donation after circulatory death occurs after the heart has stopped beating and the person’s death has been declared. DCD transplantation is done regularly in the U.S. for organs other than the heart, although DCD heart transplants have been conducted in Europe and Australia.

“This procedure has the potential to expand the donor pool by up to 30 percent,” said Jacob Schroder, M.D., who performed the transplant and is surgical director of Duke’s Heart Transplant program. “Increasing the number of donated hearts would decrease the wait time and the number of deaths that occur while people are waiting.

“It’s important to conduct this clinical trial to determine whether those outcomes are realized,” Schroder said. “We are grateful for the courage and generosity of both the donors and recipients.”

The DCD heart transplantation milestone occurred Sunday after a donated heart was deemed viable for transplant. The recipient, a military veteran who received his heart through the Mission Act, is recovering well.

*A significant number of news outlets carried this story. Please see our “in the news” section for links.*

It took a significant amount of teamwork and partnership to make this DCD transplant possible. First and foremost, we want to acknowledge the courage shown by the family members of the heart donor who are dealing with a profound loss in their lives. Our transplant recipient and his family have also demonstrated tremendous courage and trust in our care. We’d also like to recognize our outside partners in this landmark case, including Lifeline of Ohio; The Ohio State Wexner Medical Center, and of course, TransMedics. We have an incredible team at Duke and we want to thank all of you by name, but our list is incomplete, so for now we’d like to thank all members of our heart failure team, the heart transplant program, OR team members, surgeons, research coordinators, cardiac anesthesiologists, perfusionists, nurses and techs, as well as the care providers working directly with our heart recipient, especially Ben Bryner, Jacob Schroder, Carmelo Milano, Mihai Podgoreanu, Chet Patel, Sarah Casalinova, Greg Tipton, Augie Doty and many more. A lot of people played an important part in this process. We know more people will be saved in the future because of the vital work you’ve been doing. You’ve continued to build the legacy of innovation, research and care at Duke Heart. Great job, everyone!


New Cardiology Fellows Matched for 2020!

Please join us in welcoming our newest cardiology fellows into our program starting July 2020. We look forward to working with this incredible group of physicians in the coming years! Many thanks to our current fellows and faculty for their help in interviewing and recruiting our incoming group.

  • Matt Carlisle, MD, Duke
  • Alyssa “Ali” Corley, MD, Beth Israel Deaconess
  • Karen Flores Rosario, MD, UTSW
  • Joe Lerman, MD, Duke
  • Dan Loriaux, MD, Brigham and Women’s Hospital
  • Dennis Narcisse, MD, Duke
  • Sarah Snow, MD, UCLA
  • Cara Wiest, MD, Beth Israel Deaconess

Congratulations to all!


Jessica Regan Named Mandel Fellow

Jessica Regan, Internal Medicine Resident and R38 appointee, has been named the new Mandel Fellow. This is an internal award, sponsored by the Duke Cardiovascular Research Center and the Mandel Center at Duke. Her research mentor is Svati Shah.

Project summary: Clonal hematopoiesis of indeterminate potential (CHIP) is the age-related accumulation of DNA mutations in certain cell types and has been associated with increased risk of cardiovascular disease. Interestingly, recent advances in genetics have shown that variations in the DNA that individuals are born with contribute to risk of disease, but also that DNA changes can be acquired with aging and through certain exposures. My interest in CHIP and cardiometabolic disease has inspired new hypotheses about the exposures that may contribute to the acquisition of CHIP in addition to aging. My ultimate research objective is to (1) elucidate the role of metabolic pathways, genomics and inflammation to improve cardiovascular outcomes and (2) explore mechanisms connecting exposures to CHIP as a novel biomarker and ultimately identify therapeutic targets to limit disease development and progression. We often use the phrase “bench to bedside” when discussing translational research, but a mentor previously pointed out to me that the real course is bedside to bench and then back to the bedside. Now as an Internal Medicine resident and research scholar I am able to approach patients’ needs and the gaps in our knowledge from a new perspective. Congratulations, Jessica!


Shoutout for Jordan Pomeroy

In a note from Tony Gutierrez to Anna Lisa Crowley on Dec. 7, we received a really terrific shout-out for Jordan Pomeroy. “He covered a very busy VA Cath Lab yesterday and did a fantastic job. He definitely went above and beyond what is expected of a fellow by getting cases set up despite having p.m. clinic and had a great attitude about it. We are lucky to have someone like him as a fellow here at Duke. Best of all he made it out in time to watch his Ducks beat the Utes in the Pac-12 Championship. Thank again, Jordan for your hard work.” – Tony

Way to go, Jordan, and congrats to you and the Oregon Ducks!

ICYMI: Tennyson Paper Published

Congratulations to Carolina “Callie” Tennyson, DNP, ACNP-BC, AACC, one of our amazing APPs on the inpatient cardiology team, for her recent publication in the journal Geriatric Nursing, “Family presence during resuscitation: Updated review and clinical pearls”. To read, please visit: http://bit.ly/2s85eBw.

Nice work, Callie!




Upcoming Opportunities/Save the Date:

Mary Walton Retirement Party: This week!

Please join us on Wednesday, Dec. 11 from 12-2 p.m. in the Searle Center for a celebration of Mary L. Walton, RN, BSN, Duke Heart’s cardiothoracic OR scheduling manager, who is retiring from Duke Health after 42 years of service. All are welcome!


Cardiology Grand Rounds

This week, please join us for Heart Center Grand Rounds on Tuesday at 5 p.m. in DN 2003. Rich Krasuski, Jack Haney, and Sharon McCartney will lead a discussion on the medical and surgical management of chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension (CTEPH).

Upcoming Grand Rounds:

  • December 17: (5 p.m.) Faculty Staff Meeting
  • December 24: No Grand Rounds. Happy Holidays!
  • December 31: No Grand Rounds. Happy Holidays!

January 17, 2020: Please plan to attend a special Medicine Grand Rounds in the Searle Center Lecture Hall. Damon Tweedy, MD, associate professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences and author of Black Man in a White Coat, will present the annual Martin Luther King Jr. memorial lecture.

Have news to share?

If you have news to share with the Pulse readership, please contact Tracey Koepke, director of communications for Duke Heart at tracey.koepke@duke.edu. We would love to hear about your latest accomplishments, professional news, cool happenings, and any events or opportunities that may be of interest to our Duke Heart family. Please call with any questions: 919-681-2868. Feedback on Pulse is welcome and encouraged.


Duke Heart in the News:

November 27 — Sunil Rao

TCTMD/the heart beat

Subtherapeutic Heparin: As Stories Multiply, Concerns Mount


December 3 — Michael Dee Gunn

Triangle Business Journal

Duke research could be ‘big deal’ for cancer vaccines

(subscription required, no link available)

December 6 — Joe Turek with Louise Markert, Barton Haynes


Families are reeling after FDA rejects therapy for kids born without a thymus gland

Families are reeling after FDA rejects therapy for kids born without a thymus gland


DCD Heart Transplant coverage

Doctors revive donor heart to perform successful transplant in U.S., CBS News

How a device used to revive a heart could “revolutionize” transplants, CBS This Morning

Doctors perform first heart transplant of its kind on military veteran: ‘It’s a monumental leap forward’, Yahoo News

Doctors ‘reanimate’ heart for first-of-its-kind transplant in US, CNN

Heart from dead donor revived, transplanted into veteran in US first, Fox News

First US heart transplant from dead donor successful, offering promise for life-saving procedure, USA Today, Daily World

Military veteran gets first heart transplant of its kind at Duke Hospital, ABC 11 story, aired in 20 other outlets in US

Veteran becomes first US recipient of innovative heart transplant, Military Times

Duke University doctors perform first-of-its-kind heart transplant, Raleigh News & Observer, Durham Herald-Sun

Duke University physicians perform first ‘reanimated’ heart transplant, WRAL TechWire

Doctors brought a heart back to life in a transplant, the first of its kind in the US, MSN

Doctors successfully brought a dead heart back to life, BGR

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