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In this episode of "The External Medicine Podcast," Mitch Belkin (University of Maryland School of Medicine) and Daniel Belkin (Albert Einstein College of Medicine) speak with Robert Montgomery, MD, DPhil, about his background and family history of cardiomyopathy, as well as his work in immunology and transplantation. They discuss the three types of organ rejection, how to manage and prevent rejection, porcine endogenous viruses, as well as Montgomery’s work on xenotransplantation. This podcast was recorded Feb. 4, 2022.

Available on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts.

Who is Robert Montgomery?

Robert Montgomery is a professor of surgery and the chair of the Department of Surgery at NYU Langone as well as the director of the NYU Langone Transplant Institute. He received his MD from the University of Rochester School of Medicine and completed his surgical residency, multi-organ transplant fellowship, and postdoctoral fellowship in human genetics at Johns Hopkins. He also received a doctorate of philosophy in molecular immunology from the University of Oxford. He’s been the recipient of many awards including the Johns Hopkins Clinician Scientist Award, the Champion of Hope Award from the National Kidney Foundation of Maryland, and the Terasaki Medical Innovation Award from the National Kidney Registry.

Montgomery developed the first laparoscopic kidney procurement technique for transplants as well as the first “domino paired donation” — which is when two or more donors and recipients are paired in a kidney swap. He helped develop a protocol combining kidney and bone marrow transplants to prevent rejection of donor organs in immune-incompatible patients, which has eliminated the need for immunosuppressive therapy in some patients. In September 2021, Montgomery performed the first xenotransplantation of a nonhuman kidney to a deceased human donor.

What is ExMedPod?

"The External Medicine Podcast" explores nontraditional ideas and innovation through longform interviews. Co-hosts Mitch Belkin and Daniel Belkin are medical students and brothers with diverse interests. Mitch, a former Fulbright scholar, and Daniel, a former filmmaker, examine new ideas and innovation on the outskirts of medicine.

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