Monday, August 22, 2011

Internationally Recognized Expert in Marrow Transplantation Named Chief of New Division at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh

Paul Szabolcs, M.D., a native of Hungary and a pioneer in reduced-toxicity cord blood and marrow transplantation, has been appointed chief of the newly established Division of Blood and Marrow Transplantation and Cellular Therapies at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC.

Paul Szabolcs, MD
Under Dr. Szabolcs’ leadership, physicians in the Division of Blood and Marrow Transplantation and Cellular Therapies will design and test disease-specific and biologically rational novel reduced-toxicity transplantation regimens for patients with high-risk leukemia or lymphoma, and for those afflicted with life-threatening inherited conditions that can lead to bone marrow failure, immune deficiency, autoimmune diseases and neurodegenerative conditions.

Dr. Szabolcs, also a professor of Pediatrics at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, comes to Pittsburgh from Duke University Medical Center, where he was as an associate professor of pediatrics and immunology. While at Duke, he established an independent research program that combined basic and clinical investigations focused on understanding the biology of immune reconstitution and alloreactivty after cord blood transplantation and developed immunotherapy strategies to prevent or treat leukemia relapse after cord blood transplantation.

"In close collaboration with the faculty of the Division of Hematology/Oncology, Dr. Szabolcs will be working to expand our evidence-based use of blood and bone marrow transplantation and to develop cellular therapies for malignant and non-malignant diseases, including metabolic and chronic inflammatory diseases, and to carry out clinical and basic research that will lead to new discoveries for improved outcomes from cellular therapies,” said David H. Perlmutter, M.D., physician-in-chief and scientific director at Children’s Hospital, and the Vira I. Heinz Professor and chairman of the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine.

In recent years, Dr. Szabolcs, a National Institutes of Health-funded researcher, has successfully developed novel reduced-toxicity transplant conditioning regimens to improve the safety of cord blood transplantation for children afflicted with a variety of non-malignant diseases, including inborn errors of metabolism, immunodeficiencies, and sickle cell anemia. Most recently, he has turned his attention to combining unrelated-donor bone marrow transplantation with lung transplantation for curative treatment of rare immune disorders that result in or cause pulmonary failure.

Dr. Szabolcs is a graduate of Semmelweis University School of Medicine in Budapest, Hungary. He completed his residency in pediatrics at New York University School of Medicine and his fellowship in pediatric hematology/oncology/bone marrow transplantation at Cornell University Medical College and Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.

For more information about Dr. Szabolcs, the Division of Blood and Marrow Transplantation and Cellular Therapies or Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC, please visit


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