Clinical Research Division, Fred Hutch
Dr. Richard “Dick” Zager is an expert in kidney injury. Kidney damage is a serious side effect of certain therapies, including some cancer chemotherapies. Dr. Zager identifies the mechanisms by which kidney cells protect themselves from injury and what happens to kidney cells as a result of such damage. He translates his laboratory findings into new approaches to help patients. For example, he developed a drug combination designed to prevent acute kidney injury in patients at high risk. He also investigates potential strategies to prevent chronic kidney disease in people who have experienced kidney injury.
Professor, Division of Gerontology
University of Washington School of Medicine
B.S., Northwestern University, 1965
M.D., Northwestern Medical School, 1969
Residency, UCLA Medical Center, 1973-1974
Senior Resident, University of Washington, 1973-1974
Clinical Renal Fellow, Boston University Medical Center, 1975-1976
Research Fellow (Nephrology/Pathology), Peter Bent Brigham Hospital, 1976-1977
Mechanisms by which injured cells become resistant to superimposed ischemic or toxic attack. In particular, alterations in plasma membrane lipid homeostasis, stress protein induction, including proteins that are not normally produced in kidney, are addressed. Albumin, hemopexin, haptoglobin and alpha one antitrypsin are some prominent examples.
Mechanisms by which the post injured kidney develops hyper-responsive to Toll like receptor ligands are studied. In particular, epigenetic remodeling is addressed.
Exploration of novel therapeutic strategies to mitigate progressive renal injury to chronic renal disease are explored. A notable example is testing the role of novel recombinant heme oxygenase proteins as prophylactic agents to prevent acute renal failure.