Skip to main content

University of Maryland School of Medicine Scientists Receive Prestigious UMB Founders Week Awards

October 15, 2018 | Joanne Morrison

Dr. Karen Kotloff Named Researcher of the Year; Dr. Steven Hanish, Dr. Thomas Scalea and Dr. Debora Stein Named Entrepreneurs of the Year for Liver Dialysis Device Called the Molecular Absorbent Recirculating System (MARS)

Steven I. Hanish, MDSeveral experts at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) received prestigious awards commemorating the University of Maryland Baltimore (UMB) 2018 Founders Week. Among them, Karen Kotloff, MD, Professor of Pediatrics, was named "Researcher of the Year" for her extensive work in infectious diseases in the U.S. and developing countries. The MARS team– Steven I. Hanish, MD, Visiting Associate Professor of Surgery, Thomas M. Scalea, MD, FACS, FCCM, The Honorable Francis X. Kelly Distinguished Professor in Trauma Surgery, and Deborah Stein, MD, MPH, FACS, FCCM, The R Adams Cowley, MD Professor in Shock and Trauma– were named "Entrepreneurs of the Year" for their liver dialysis device called the Molecular Absorbent Recirculating System (MARS).

Dr. Kotloff is Head of UMSOM's Division of Infectious Disease and Tropical Pediatrics and Associate Director of Clinical Studies for UMSOM's Center for Vaccine Development and Global Health (CVD). She has been instrumental in advancing the understanding of infectious pathogens and preventive and therapeutic interventions for children around the globe. She has spent her entire faculty career at UMSOM, starting in 1986, and serves as an advisor to the World Health Organization, the Gates Foundation, the Food and Drug Administration, and others. She is also a mentor of fellows and junior faculty members, including several who have now developed their own independent successful research careers at the school.

"Dr. Kotloff's work has been instrumental in setting policy and interventions around the world aimed at reducing childhood mortality," said UMSOM Dean E. Albert Reece, MD, PhD, MBA, who is also the Executive Vice president for Medical Affairs, UM Baltimore, and the John Z. and Akiko K. Bowers Distinguished Professor. "Her work is important not only to our community here in Baltimore, but to those in low resource settings around the world."

Drs. Scalea and SteinDrs. Hanish, Scalea and Stein's innovative application of MARS offers hope for those suffering with liver failure. This device can remove toxins, improve clotting and reduce brain swelling. The first use of MARS was at the R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center, where Dr. Scalea is also the Physician-In-Chief, Dr. Stein is Chief of Trauma and Dr. Hanish is a liver transplant surgeon.

‌Drs. Hanish, Scalea, and Stein have published the results of their life-saving work with the MARS in one of the largest studies to date, paving the way for other clinicians to use this device and affect countless lives.

Their results using MARS as a bridge to recovery and/or transplant also could serve as an important first step in gaining FDA approval for liver transplant recipients.

"Liver failure is a devastating disease that affects around 1,600 patients in the U.S. each year. With implementation of the MARS device, Drs. Hanish, Scalea and Stein have set an important path that will dramatically change the lives of those suffering from this terrible disease" said Dean Reece.

About the University of Maryland School of Medicine

Now in its third century, the University of Maryland School of Medicine was chartered in 1807 as the first public medical school in the United States. It continues today as one of the fastest growing, top-tier biomedical research enterprises in the world -- with 43 academic departments, centers, institutes, and programs; and a faculty of more than 3,000 physicians, scientists, and allied health professionals, including members of the National Academy of Medicine and the National Academy of Sciences, and a distinguished recipient of the Albert E. Lasker Award in Medical Research. With an operating budget of more than $1 billion, the School of Medicine works closely in partnership with the University of Maryland Medical Center and Medical System to provide research-intensive, academic and clinically-based care for more than 1.2 million patients each year. The School has over 2,500 students, residents, and fellows, and more than $530 million in extramural funding, with most of its academic departments highly ranked among all medical schools in the nation in research funding. As one of the seven professional schools that make up the University of Maryland, Baltimore campus, the School of Medicine has a total workforce of nearly 7,000 individuals. The combined School and Medical System ("University of Maryland Medicine") has an annual budget of nearly $6 billion and an economic impact more than $15 billion on the state and local community. The School of Medicine faculty, which ranks as the 8th highest among public medical schools in research productivity, is an innovator in translational medicine, with 600 active patents and 24 start-up companies. The School works locally, nationally, and globally, with research and treatment facilities in 36 countries around the world. Visit


Department of Anesthesiology
(410) 328-6120 (phone)
(410) 328-5531 (fax)

Joanne Morrison
Director of Marketing and Public Relations
University of Maryland School of Medicine

Related stories