Manikkam (Suthan) Suthanthiran, MD, FACP is the Chief of Nephrology, Hypertension and Transplantation Medicine at NewYork-Presbyterian-Weill Cornell Medicine. He holds the Stanton Griffis Distinguished Professor of Medicine and Professorships in Biochemistry and Surgery at Weill Cornell Medicine.
RESEARCH ACCOMPLISHMENTS. Dr. Suthanthiran’s laboratory discovered that T cell CD2 is a receptor for antigen presenting cells and generates costimulatory signals for T cell activation, shifting the paradigm from IL-1 as the necessary T cell costimulatory signal. Targeting CD2 has enhanced tolerance induction in transplant patients. His demonstration that CD3 signaling stimulates cytotoxic T cells (CTLs), memory T cells and natural killer cells, and his discovery of cell-surface expression of TNFA by CTLs materially stimulated the development of therapeutics targeting of CD3E and TNFA in patients with organ grafts, TIDM, psoriasis and rheumatoid arthritis. Suthanthiran’s discovery that cyclosporine and tacrolimus stimulate hyperexpression of TGFB1 identified the primary mechanism for calcineurin inhibitor nephrotoxicity and hypertension, provided the rationale for calcineurin inhibitor avoidance or minimization in organ transplantation, and uncovered an autonomous cellular mechanism for cancer progression in organ graft recipients. Suthanthiran introduced the competitive quantitative polymerase chain reaction assay and applied it innovatively to characterize allograft status. He went on to develop noninvasive nucleic acid-based protocols for improved management of allograft recipients.
PRINCIPAL HONORS, AWARDS: President, American Society of Transplantation (AST), (1993–1994); Board of Directors, United Network for Organ Sharing (1994–1996); Editor, Transplantation (1997–2014); Established Investigator Award, AST; Lifetime Achievement Award, Indian Society of Transplantation; Pioneer in Medicine Award, National Kidney Foundation; Distinguished Achievement Award, AST; NIH MERIT Award; Maharishi Sushruta Pioneer in Transplantation Award; Top 10 Outstanding Clinical Research Achievement in USA; American Society of Transplantation Mentoring Award; Jean Hamburger Award, International Society of Nephrology; Dr. Vidya Acharya Oration at the Congress of the Asian Society of Transplantation.