Hrishikesh S. Kulkarni, MD, an assistant professor of medicine and of molecular microbiology at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, has received the Early Career Award from the International Complement Society. He is being honored for his research into the complement system, an important component of immunity.
The complement system helps the immune system’s antibodies and other immune cells fight infection. The Early Career Award recognizes outstanding research focused on the complement system and conducted in the early stages of an investigator’s research career.
Kulkarni, a pulmonologist in the Division of Pulmonary & Critical Care Medicine, is focused on understanding how complement proteins in the lungs and blood respond to infection, and the roles the proteins may play in lung injury and lung transplantation. He did his postdoctoral training in the laboratory of John P. Atkinson, MD, the Samuel Grant Professor of Medicine, in the Division of Rheumatology. He has led collaborative projects with groups at the University of Pennsylvania, University of Pittsburgh, Yale University and the University of Copenhagen. Most recently, he has worked to understand the role of the complement system in patients with COVID-19. His research group is focused on understanding how complement proteins in the lungs affect the ability to fight off infection.