Vikas Dharnidharka Installed as Alexis F. Hartmann Professor of Pediatrics

Vikas Dharnidharka, MD, MPH, installed as the Alexis F. Hartmann Sr, MD, Professor of Pediatrics.

WashU Nephrology congratulates Vikas Dharnidharka, MD, MPH, who was installed as the Alexis F. Hartmann Sr, MD, Professor of Pediatrics at a ceremony on August 3, 2023, at the Eric P. Newman Education Center.  He presented the talk “Infections and cancers after transplant: what they have taught us about immunology, virology, genomics and oncology,” prefaced with a special recognition to legacies, the Hartmann family, and the Pediatric Nephrology Division.”

As Director of Pediatric Nephrology, Hypertension and Apheresis at WashU and the Vice-Chair for Clinical Investigation in the Department of Pediatrics, Dharnidharka provides highly specialized care to children and young adults with all types of kidney disease, with a focus on end-stage renal disease and kidney transplant. He has published more than 230 peer-reviewed journal articles.   Acknowledging all his “fabulous” collaborators, Dharnidharka says, “The interdisciplinary magic of transplantation science has allowed us to work with many great scientific collaborators across multiple disciplines, enriching all of us in the process.”

In 2021, Dharnidharka was elected as a faculty member to the Alpha Omega Alpha (AΩA) Honor Medical Society, a national medical honor society organized over 100 years ago to promote excellence in academic scholarship, to honor leadership, and to encourage the highest standards of professionalism in the medical field.  Becoming an AΩA faculty member is a lifelong honor.

Alexis F. Hartmann Sr, MD

The endowed professorship was created in honor of Alexis F. Hartmann, Sr., MD, Hartmann, a highly regarded physician-scientist, clinician, and teacher who was head of the Department of Pediatrics at WashU and physician-in-chief at St. Louis Children’s Hospital from 1936-1964.  Unfortunately, there are no surviving descendants of Alexis Hartmann Sr.  The Pediatric Department, therefore, stepped in to honor his legacy by establishing the endowment in 2012.  Thomas W. Ferkol Jr., MD, was named the first Alexis F. Hartmann, MD, Professor. Read about Dr. Hartmann’s many accomplishments here

Life is not all work and no play for Dr. Dharnidharka.  In addition to his distinguished career, Dharnidharka has accumulated many accolades in his “leisure” life.  He is a dedicated table tennis and pickleball champion, winning multiple awards, most recently at the St. Louis Senior Olympics held over 2 weekends in May, 2023. 

“I won five medals,” he says.  “In table tennis, I got two golds (for men’s singles and mixed doubles), plus a silver in men’s doubles.  In pickle ball, I won a silver in men’s singles and a bronze in men’s doubles.”  Shortly after this competition, Dharnidharka went on to compete at the National Senior Games in Pittsburgh in both of these sports. 

“Not only is playing racket sports fun, but it keeps my body healthy and my mind sharp!” Read more about Dharnidharka’s off-time passion here.

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