Penn's active research and clinical trials provide additional resources for kidney transplant patients. Take a look at the current kidney transplantation clinical trials being performed at Penn.

Eciluzumab Study (Eculizumab for Prevention of Delayed Graft Function in Deceased Donor Kidney Transplantation)

Investigators: Roy Bloom, MD, Robin Neubauer, RN, Jennifer Trofe-Clark, PharmD

DGF is both an outcome following kidney transplantation and a predictor for long term graft function. In an era of a tremendous shortage of kidneys for transplantation, every effort should be made to improve the survival of the transplanted kidneys in the recipient. Therefore, it is imperative that we implement strategies to reduce the incidence of DGF in an effort to improve long-term graft survival. 

There are currently no accepted or FDA approved therapies for prevention or treatment of DGF following transplantation. The sponsor investigator of this proposed trial previously performed a pilot study for safety and preliminary efficacy on 8 recipients of first deceased donor kidney transplants at high risk for DGF, half of whom received eculizumab i.v. in the OR prior to reperfusion and the other half received saline as a control. All patients were treated with rabbit anti-thymocyte globulin induction. While 2 of 4 patients in the control group required dialysis for post-transplant DGF, none of the 4 given eculizumab required dialysis. Urine outputs trended to be greater and serum creatinine on Day 30 post-transplant trended lower in the patients given Eculizumab. There was no difference in adverse event rates between the 2 groups. Based on these promising results suggesting efficacy without toxicity we designed this expanded follow up study.

Contact: Robin Neubauer, RN at 215-615-0773 or

RESTARRT Study (Immunosuppression with Anti-Thymocyte Globulin, Rituximab, Tacrolimus, Mycophenolate Mofetil and Sirolimus, Followed by Immunosuppression Withdrawal in Living-Donor Renal Transplant Recipients)

Investigators: Ali Naji, MD, PhD, Jennifer Trofe-Clark Pharm D 

Learn more about this study.

Circulating Donor-Derived Cell-Free DNA in Blood for Diagnosing Acute Rejection in Kidney Transplant Recipients (DART), Protocol SN-C-00006

Investigators: Roy Bloom, MD, Robin Neubauer, RN, Jennifer Trofe-Clark, PharmD

The purpose of the study is to observe the measurement of DNA in your blood during your routine post-transplant follow-up visits for use as a marker for kidney tissue injury. Measuring the release of DNA from the transplanted kidney in the blood has been proposed to provide information on tissue injury in the kidney due to rejection.

Contact: Robin Neubauer, RN, at 215-615-0773 or

Zepatier For Treatment Of Hepatitis C-Negative Patients Who Receive Kidney Transplants From Hepatitis C-Positive Donors (HCV)

Co-Principal Investigators: David Goldberg, MD, MSCE and Peter Reese, MD, MSCE

Sponsor: Merck

This study is being conducted to determine safety and effectiveness of transplanting kidneys from Hepatitis C-positive donors into Hepatitis C-negative patients on the kidney transplant waitlist, who will then be treated with Zepatier after the single kidney transplantation.

Research coordinator: Anna Sicilia,

PERT Study: The Use of Peri-operative Intravenous Estrogen for the Mitigation of Ischemia Reperfusion Injury in the Setting of Renal Transplantation

Principal Investigator: Matthew Levine, MD, PhD

The purpose of this study is to see if giving intravenous (IV) estrogen at the time of kidney transplant will help the kidney work properly after it is transplanted. Sometimes after a kidney is transplanted, the kidney does not work as it should right away. When this happens, patients typically require dialysis treatments within the first week after transplant.

When the transplanted kidney does not work right away, there can be increased medical costs, increased length of hospital stay and decreased graft (kidney) survival. Currently there are no preventative measures or treatments though dialysis is used until recovery of kidney function occurs. Some research studies in mice have shown a more positive outcome in female compared to male mice. Research in this area has focused on hormonal effects of estrogen and testosterone. This is a randomized trial where participating subjects will receive either three doses of intravenous estrogen or an intravenous placebo during their hospital stay.

Contact: Mary Shaw, BBA, RN at 215-615-0528 or

Find out more information about clinical trials at the Penn Transplant Institute.

Share This Page: