The research interests of Sandra M. Herrmann, M.D., are focused on nephrotoxicity of cancer immunotherapies and mechanisms of hypertensive kidney disease. In particular, Dr. Herrmann's studies of renovascular disease focus on pathways of inflammation and injury in ischemic nephropathy and the potential for repair of the injured kidney using regenerative medicine.
- Regenerative medicine. Dr. Herrmann's research involves the application of mesenchymal cell therapy in preclinical models of hypertensive kidney disease oriented toward translation to patients with chronic kidney disease in the setting of hypertension and occlusive renovascular disease. She is interested in optimization of stem cell function using hypoxia preconditioning and further studying its effects on paracrine mechanisms of mesenchymal stem cell-derived extracellular vesicles.
- Renovascular disease. Dr. Herrmann is interested in the mechanisms and physiopathology of atherosclerotic renovascular disease. She is studying the disease process and the effects of ischemia-reperfusion injury during percutaneous revascularization.
- Onco-nephrology. Dr. Herrmann's research is focused on kidney diseases caused by hematologic diseases and on nephrotoxicity of cancer therapeutic agents such as immune checkpoint inhibitors, chimeric antigen receptor (CAR)-T cell therapy and other targeted cancer therapies.
Significance to patient care
Dr. Herrmann's goal is to improve the outcomes of patients with chronic kidney disease. Through innovative research identifying novel regenerative medicine therapies, Dr. Herrmann's work will aid in recovery from kidney disease (or at least stabilization of kidney function) in order to avoid or delay renal replacement therapy such dialysis or kidney transplantation.
In addition, identifying and characterizing nephrotoxicity of cancer therapies helps to understand the etiology of the renal adverse event of a patient, which may help with management of the relevant side effect profile and timely recognition of adverse effects in patients undergoing cancer treatment.