The Kidney Foundation of Canada

Dr. Amit Garg 

Dr. Amit Garg

Lawson Health Research Institute, ON

Collective cell migration in urinary tract morphogenesis and disease

Co-applicant(s): David Mazer; Nadine Shehata; Shay McGuinness

2018-2020:  $49,500 |  Biomedical Research Grants  |  Category: Renal failure

Lay Summary

Background: When people have heart surgery their kidneys can sometimes be injured. This is known as “acute kidney injury”. This condition is very serious and sometimes causes kidney failure or death. To diagnose acute kidney injury, blood tests are needed before and after the surgery. These blood tests can show if the patient’s kidney function has dropped significantly, which means acute kidney injury has occurred.

Methods: We are conducting a kidney sub-study of a large clinical trial of patients undergoing heart surgery. This trial is comparing two approaches to blood transfusions during heart surgery: restrictive and liberal approaches. The main trial will determine if clinical outcomes such as death and heart attacks are different between transfusion groups. We have added extra kidney measurements to this trial in order to compare the number of patients who get acute kidney injury in each transfusion group.

Summary: We want to make sure that the restrictive approach to transfusion is as safe as the liberal approach in patients undergoing heart surgery. We also want to know if the restrictive approach is safe in patients with chronic kidney disease.


Dr. Garg practices nephrology at the London Health Sciences Centre and is a Professor of Medicine, Epidemiology and Biostatistics at Western University. He has contributed to the landscape of Canadian kidney research over the last 18 years with over 450 publications (including several studies published with teams in the highest-ranked medical journals). More importantly, several findings have had a demonstrable impact in improving the health and care of persons living with kidney disease. His various leadership roles help him translate research findings into better patient care, practice and policy. He currently serves as the President for the Canadian Society of Nephrology. He has used his Masters in Education and research activities to deliver mentorship and training to help over 75 prior trainees realize their professional goals.