Paul Ichiro Terasaki (Japanese: 寺崎一郎, September 10, 1929 – January 25, 2016) was an American scientist in the field of human organ transplant technology, and professor emeritus of surgery at UCLA School of Medicine.
Paul I. Terasaki
|Died||January 25, 2016 (aged 86)|
|Known for||organ transplant medicine; tissue typing|
|Awards||UCLA Terasaki Life Sciences Building|
He spent three high school years during World War II interned with his family and other Japanese Americans in the Gila River War Relocation Center. Later he earned his bachelor's, master's, and doctorate in zoology all from UCLA and was appointed to the medical school faculty.
In 1964, Terasaki developed the microcytotoxicity test, a tissue-typing test for organ transplant donors and recipients that required only 1 microliter each of antisera used to identify human leukocyte antigens (HLA). The test was adopted as the international standard for tissue typing. He has focused on study of the humoral theory of transplant rejection, which states that antibodies cause allograft rejection. He and his corporation, One Lambda, have played a central role in the development of tissue typing and transplantation surgery.
Terasaki established UCLA's HLA laboratory, and also established the UCLA Kidney Transplant Registry, the largest in the world. In 1999, he retired from UCLA, but within a year resumed his academic pursuits with the creation of the Terasaki Foundation, a research center dedicated to cancer immunotherapy and the study of humoral immunity and transplantation.
On May 13, 2010, UCLA announced the naming of the new life science building for Terasaki, who has given $50 million to the Division of Life Sciences in the UCLA College of Letters and Science, which is the largest ever given to the UCLA College. The structure is known as the Terasaki Life Sciences Building. He was awarded the 2011 UCLA Edward A. Dickson Alumnus of the Year award on April 13, 2012, and the UCLA medal on June 15, 2012.
Paul Terasaki was married to artist Hisako Terasaki; they had four children.
He died on January 25, 2016, after a long illness.
Training is also available in cellular immunology through the UCLA immunogenetics laboratory. This world-renowned HLA laboratory was founded by Dr. Paul I. Terasaki, and is now an integrated component of the Division of Laboratory Medicine.