2016 Women in Transplantation Awards

Lori West, MD, DPhil, FRCPC, is an acknowledged leader internationally in the field of paediatric cardiac transplantation and immunology. Her pioneering clinical work in ABO incompatible infant heart transplantation has had an enormous impact in the field worldwide. This together with her laboratory investigations exploring the mechanisms of tolerance in the B cell compartment that develops in infants who receive an ABO incompatible graft has generated new insights in the field. Lori has taken leading roles at her own institution where she is Director of the Albert Transplant Institute and nationally where she pioneered the development of the Canadian National Transplant Research Programme, a multi-disciplinary research programme in transplantation across all of the provinces; Lori is currently Director of CNTRP.

Lori is an exemplary educator and mentor. She has trained, and continues to train, numerous highly qualified physicians and scientists, many of whom will be tomorrow’s academic leaders. Indeed, her trainees have won many awards from the major transplant professional societies and granting agencies.

Elmi Muller, MMed, MBChB, FCS, MRCS, FACS is the Head of the Transplant Unit at Groote Schuur Hospital in Capetown, South Africa, and directs an impressive clinical service at an institution with a rich history in transplantation. Through Elmi’s groundbreaking work in transplanting HIV positive organs from deceased donors into HIV positive recipients many South Africans are alive and off dialysis. Her work has had international impact on laws involving donation, including the introduction of the HIV Organ Policy Equity (HOPE) Act in the United States in 2014, ending the US federal ban on the procurement of organs from donors infected with HIV.

Elmi’s work with the transplant community goes well beyond her work with HIV positive donors, and includes volunteering her time with The Transplantation Society, the Women in Transplantation initiative, as an Executive Committee member of the Declaration of Istanbul Custodian Group (DICG) and her ongoing involvement in an international effort to bring renal transplant programs to the African continent.

Lalitha Raghuram’s role as a catalyst has brought together public and private hospitals, families, medical staff and public at large to take responsibility for organ donation. Her contribution in creating dedicated transplant coordinators, families, medical staff and public at large to take responsibility for organ donation. Her contribution is immeasurable, there are more than 1000 professionals have been trained so far with a direct impact of more than 5500 organs and tissues being transplanted to needy patients from deceased donors.

The transplant coordinator training is offered to all the interested and qualified individuals irrespective of their race, religion, gender, ethnicity, class, caste or creed. There are more than 500 women (more than 50%) that have been trained through this training program.

Lalitha Raghuram has been a mentor and an active board member of several hospitals has advocated for increasing women in transplantation be it doctors, nurses, or social workers. Her visionary untiring efforts along with MOHAN Foundation in India are on the path of saving many lives.