Scott Michael Palmer, MD

Professor of Medicine
Member in the Duke Clinical Research Institute
Vice-Chair for Research in the Department of Medicine
Professor in Immunology
Professor in Population Health Sciences
Core Faculty in Innovation & Entrepreneurship
Campus mail 2085 Msrb2 2 Genome Ct, Durham, NC 27710
Phone (919) 684-0245
Email address

Dr. Palmer leads a successful program of clinical, basic and translational research in transplantation and advanced lung diseases. He currently directs the pulmonary research program at the Duke Clinical Research Institute (DCRI) and serves as Vice Chair for Research in the Department of Medicine.

Dr. Palmer has over 150 peer reviewed publications, received numerous awards, including election into the American Society for Clinical Investigation (ASCI) in 2012, chaired many sessions at national and international meetings, serves regularly on NIH study sections, and is on the editorial board of many prominent journals. He is also Associate Director of the Clinical Research Training Program at Duke and has personally mentored over 40 pre-and post-doctoral trainees, many of whom are now engaged in their own successful research careers.

His scientific accomplishments include the first human studies to demonstrate the importance of innate immunity in transplant rejection and completion of a prospective multicenter study that improved CMV prevention after lung transplantation.

Current basic projects in the lab are studying the role of the matrix in the activation of innate immunity in pulmonary transplant rejection, and epithelial injury and repair in the development of toxin induced bronchiolitis obliterans. Translational and human projects are studying predictors of lung transplant survival in the UNOS database, immune monitoring to predict CMV infection and acute rejection after lung transplantation, and the use of novel inhaled antibiotics in lung transplantation. The lab is also using cutting edge whole exome genetic sequencing to identify genetic predictors of transplant rejection.

Dr. Palmer also leads trials coordinated through the DCRI that study the natural history and investigate new treatments for idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF), chronic lung transplant rejection, and posttransplant cytomegalovirus infection.

Education and Training

  • Fellow, Pulmonary Medicine, Medicine, Duke University, 1996 - 1999
  • Medical Resident, Medicine, Duke University, 1993 - 1996
  • M.H.S., Duke University, 2000
  • M.D., Duke University, 1993


Veeken, Cornelis, Scott M. Palmer, R Duane Davis, and Katherine P. Grichnik. “Living-related lobar lung transplantation..” J Cardiothorac Vasc Anesth 18, no. 4 (August 2004): 506–11.

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Silvertooth, Erin J., P. M. Doraiswamy, G. L. Clary, M. A. Babyak, N. Wilkerson, C. Hellegars, and S. M. Palmer. “Citalopram and quality of life in lung transplant recipients..” Psychosomatics 45, no. 3 (May 2004): 271–72.

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Palmer, S. M., L. H. Burch, and D. A. Schwartz. “Toll-like receptors and allograft rejection - Response.” American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine 169, no. 8 (April 15, 2004): 971–72.


Palmer, Scott M., Dan C. Grinnan, B. Diane Reams, Mark P. Steele, Robert H. Messier, and R. Duane Davis. “Delay of CMV infection in high-risk CMV mismatch lung transplant recipients due to prophylaxis with oral ganciclovir..” Clin Transplant 18, no. 2 (April 2004): 179–85.

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Hadjiliadis, Denis, Mark P. Steele, Joseph A. Govert, R Duane Davis, and Scott M. Palmer. “Outcome of lung transplant patients admitted to the medical ICU..” Chest 125, no. 3 (March 2004): 1040–45.

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Drew, Richard H., Elizabeth Dodds Ashley, Daniel K. Benjamin, R. Duane Davis, Scott M. Palmer, and John R. Perfect. “Comparative safety of amphotericin B lipid complex and amphotericin B deoxycholate as aerosolized antifungal prophylaxis in lung-transplant recipients..” Transplantation 77, no. 2 (January 27, 2004): 232–37.

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