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


Fields, TA, McCall, SJ, Reams, BD, Roggli, VL, Palmer, SM, and Howell, DN. "Pulmonary embolization of microcrystalline cellulose in a lung transplant recipient." The Journal of Heart and Lung Transplantation : the Official Publication of the International Society for Heart Transplantation 24, no. 5 (May 2005): 624-627.

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Palmer, SM, Bahnson, T, and Davis, RD. "Atrial fibrillation, atrial flutter, or both after pulmonary transplantation [8]." Chest 127, no. 4 (April 1, 2005): 1462-null. (Letter)

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Palmer, SM, Burch, LH, Trindade, AJ, Davis, RD, Herczyk, WF, Reinsmoen, NL, and Schwartz, DA. "Innate immunity influences long-term outcomes after human lung transplant." American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine 171, no. 7 (April 2005): 780-785.

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Appel, JZ, Hartwig, MG, Cantu, E, Palmer, SM, Reinsmoen, NL, and Davis, RD. "Differences in survival and de novo anti-donor antibody development among lung transplant recipients presensitized to third party class I and class II HLA antigens.": Elsevier BV, February 2005.

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Hartwig, MG, Snyder, LD, Appel, JZ, Simsir, S, Lin, SS, Palmer, SM, and Davis, RD. "Rabbit antithymocyte globulin induction therapy for lung transplantation does not affect long-term allograft function or survival.": Elsevier BV, February 2005.

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Palmer, SM. "Preface." Respiratory Care Clinics of North America 10, no. 4 (December 1, 2004).

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Trindade, AJ, and Palmer, SM. "Current concepts and controversies in lung transplantation." Respir Care Clin N Am 10, no. 4 (December 2004): 427-v. (Review)

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Cantu, E, Appel, JZ, Hartwig, MG, Woreta, H, Green, C, Messier, R, Palmer, SM, and Davis, RD. "J. Maxwell Chamberlain Memorial Paper. Early fundoplication prevents chronic allograft dysfunction in patients with gastroesophageal reflux disease." The Annals of thoracic surgery 78, no. 4 (October 2004): 1142-1151. (Academic Article)


Appel, JZ, Burgess, BO, Herczyk, WF, Cantu, E, Hartwig, MG, Palmer, SM, Davis, RD, and Reinsmoen, NL. "Perioperative desensitization therapy decreases acute rejection in sensitized lung transplant recipients.": Elsevier BV, September 2004.

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Appel, JZ, Burgess, BO, Herczyk, WF, Cantu, E, Hartwig, MG, Palmer, SM, Davis, RD, and Reinsmoen, NL. "Role of flow cytometry to define donors with unacceptable HLA antigens for sensitized lung transplant candidates.": Elsevier BV, September 2004.

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