Skip to main content
Explore URMC

Martin S. Zand, M.D., Ph.D.

Contact Information

Phone Numbers

Appointment: (585) 275-7753

Administrative: (585) 273-2819

Office: (585) 273-2819

Fax: (585) 442-9201

URMFGA member of the University of Rochester Medical Faculty Group

groupAn Accountable Health Partner

assignmentAccepting New Patients

Faculty Appointments

  • Professor - Department of Medicine , Nephrology (SMD)
  • Senior Associate Dean, Clinical Research - Department of Dean's Office M&D - Administration (SMD)
  • Co-Director - Clinical & Translational Science Institute

Patient Care Settings

Nephrology, Organ Transplant


Dr. Zand is Professor of Medicine and Medical Humanities in the Division of Nephrology. He is also Co-Director of the Clinical and Translational Science Institute, Co-Director of The Center for Leading Innovation and Collaboration and Director of the Rochester Center for Health Informatics. His clinical practice is focused on the care of kidney transplant patients. His approach emphasizes holistic care of the whole person, mind and body. He brings to his practice of medicine an extensive experience in cutting edge clinical immunology, and a practical approach to wellness emphasizing exercise, diet, stress-reduction, and mindfulness. He has an active research program in the biology of antibody producing cells and their role in vaccine responses, transplant rejection, and health informatics.

Professional Background

Dr. Zand is a Professor of Medicine in the Division of Nephrology at the University of Rochester. In January 2015, Dr. Zand became Co-Director of the Clinical and Translational Science Institute (CTSI) funded by the NIH: NCATS, National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences. The CTSI develops, demonstrates and disseminates methods and approaches to advance translational research, by providing education and training, supporting transdisciplinary teams, improving quality and efficiency, and engaging community stakeholders. In July 2017, Dr. Zand became the Co-Director of the Center for Leading Innovation and Collaboration (CLIC) funded by the NIH: NCATS, National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences. CLIC offers data coordination services to collect, analyze and transform CTSA Consortium data to actionable insights that accelerate the impact of Consortium programs. It will also support effective, efficient and coordinated collaboration and team science. In the Fall of 2014, Dr. Zand founded the Rochester Center for Health Informatics, whose focus is using health informatics, graph theory, and "big data" analytics to understand how the healthcare system and the community are interconnected and interdependent, and how these connections contribute to population health.

Dr. Zand graduated from Northwestern University with an undergraduate degree in Biomedical Engineering, a PhD in Cell, Molecular and Structural Biology, and an MD. He completed his residency in Internal Medicine and Fellowship in Nephrology at Beth Israel Medical Center and Harvard University in Boston. He joined University of Rochester Medical Center faculty in July 1998 as Medical Director of the Kidney and Pancreas Transplant Programs, which he led until 2014, when he became Director of the Rochester Center for Health Informatics.

Dr. Zand has a clinical practice in Transplant Nephrology and Transplant Medicine, and sees patients with kidney and other solid organ transplants. He is an internationally recognized expert in B cell immunobiology in solid organ transplantation. He directs an active NIH funded research program in B cell immunobiology, vaccine biology, and computational modeling of immune responses. He leads the Rochester Center for Health Informatics, which is focused on using advanced data science methods to analyze population health data to create a "living healthcare laboratory" which improves community health and healthcare delivery.


My research is focused in two areas: Understanding how B cells respond to vaccines and organ transplants to produce antibodies, and using graph theory to understand how we can understand and improve population health and healthcare delivery. My groups use a similar core set of analytic methods in both areas, including high dimensional clustering methods, graph theory, differential equation and stochastic branching process modeling.

My laboratory studies how B cells and plasma cells participate in the adaptive immune response, through antibody production, antigen presentation, and modulation of immune responses by other immune cells. Our goal is to understand how B cell differentiation and antibody production is regulated if we are to enhance B cell anti-viral and vaccine responses, or to prevent transplant rejection. We use innovative mathematical modeling and statistical analyses to gain insights from complex and large experimental data sets. Our experiments often involve daily analysis of gene expression and cellular phenotypes from single subjects over 5-10 days after vaccination. The scientific questions we are focused on include:

1. What is the timing of B cell differentiation and antibody secretion, and how can we alter the molecular and cellular events to improve vaccine responses?
2. What are the molecular gene expression signatures of a successful B cell vaccine response?
3. How can we use mathematical models to create individualized treatment protocols for kidney transplant patients with antibody mediated rejection or allosensitization?

My Health Informatics Group uses advanced data science analytics to understand how people make their way through the healthcare system, and how larger factors such as employment, mental health, community engagement, and socio-economic status contribute to population health. We use network theory to investigate connections between these factors, and turn those insights into population health based research initiatives that we refer to as the "living healthcare laboratory". We collaborate with groups in the Institute for Data Science, the University of Rochester Medical Center, and numerous community and population health groups within the greater Rochester community.



  • Internal Medicine
  • Nephrology - American Board of Internal Medicine


MD, PhD | Northwestern University, Feinberg School of Medicine

Post-doctoral Training & Residency

07/01/1995 - 06/30/1998
Fellowship in Nephrology at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center

06/23/1992 - 06/30/1993
Internship in Internal Medicine at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center

07/01/1992 - 06/30/1995
Residency in Internal Medicine at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center

VIEW ALL expand_more


Technology Innovation Award - Cleveland Clinic

American Society of Transplant Physicians Young Investigator Award

Selected Participant-Woods Hole Marine Biology Laboratory

Northwestern University Medical Scientist Training Program Scholarship

1981 - 1992
Honors Program in Medical Education Scholarship
Sponsor: Northwestern University

VIEW ALL expand_more

Clinical Trials

Comparison of the Efficacy and Safety of Human Coronavirus Immune Plasma (HCIP) vs. Control (SARS-CoV-2 Non-immune) Plasma Among Outpatients With Symptomatic COVID-19.

Lead Researcher: Martin S Zand

The purpose of this study is to is to determine if convalescent plasma will help a person with COVID-19 symptoms improve and prevent admission into the hospital. Convalescent plasma is plasma from a person who has recovered from a COVID-19 infection. Participants in this study will receive either control or convalescent plasma. COVID-19 symptoms include but are not limited to fever, cough, or loss of taste or smell. You must be 18 years or older to participate.

View Study Details

Convalescent Plasma to Stem Coronavirus: A Randomized, Blinded Phase 2 Study Comparing the Efficacy and Safety Human Coronavirus Immune Plasma (HCIP) vs. Control (SARS-CoV-2 Non-immune Plasma) Among Adults Exposed to COVID-19

Lead Researcher: Martin S Zand

This study will determine if plasma collected from the blood of people who have recovered from COVID-19 infection will help others who are at risk for getting COVID-19. Participants should be people who are at high risk for COVID-19 infection. They will receive a one-time infusion of convalescent or control plasma. Convalescent plasma is from a person who has recovered from a COVID-19 infection. Plasma will not have COVID-19 but will have antibodies to the virus. The purpose of this study is to determine if these antibodies will help keep people who are at high risk for getting COVID from getting infected. To be eligible you must have had close contact with someone who is COVID-19 positive and have a high risk for illness such as >=65, reside in a nursing home or long-term care facility, have chronic lung disease, asthma, heart disease, obesity, uncontrolled diabetes, renal failure, liver disease or cancer. Or you must be a healthcare professional with high risk exposure such as have had prolonged close contact with patients with COVID-19 who were not wearing a facemask while HCP nose and mouth were exposed to material potentially infectious with the virus causing COVID-19.

View Study Details


Patent Title: Analyte-Releasing Beads and Use Thereof in Quantitative Elispot or Fluorispot Assay
Patent #: 8,569,074
Issue Date: Oct 29, 2013
Country: United States
Invented By: Miguel A Brown, Alicia D Henn, Martin S Zand


Journal Articles

Stebegg M, Bignon A, Hill DL, Silva-Cayetano A, Krueger C, Vanderleyden I, Innocentin S, Boon L, Wang J, Zand MS, Dooley J, Clark J, Liston A, Carr E, Linterman MA. "Rejuvenating conventional dendritic cells and T follicular helper cell formation after vaccination." eLife.. 2020 Mar 24; 9Epub 2020 Mar 24.

Hilchey SP, Palshikar MG, Emo JA, Li D, Garigen J, Wang J, Mendelson ES, Cipolla V, Thakar J, Zand MS. "Cyclosporine a directly affects human and mouse b cell migration in vitro by disrupting a hIF-1 ?dependent, o sensing, molecular switch." BMC immunology. 2020 Mar 18; 21(1):13. Epub 2020 Mar 18.

Wang J, Li D, Wiltse A, Emo J, Hilchey SP, Zand MS. "Application of volumetric absorptive microsampling (VAMS) to measure multidimensional anti-influenza IgG antibodies by the mPlex-Flu assay." Journal of clinical and translational science.. 2019 Dec 0; 3(6):332-343. Epub 2019 Sep 26.