Bruce Klitzman


Associate Professor of Surgery

Our overriding interests are in the fields of tissue engineering, wound healing, biosensors, and long term improvement of medical device implantation. My basic research interests are in the area of physiological mechanisms of optimizing substrate transport to tissue. This broad topic covers studies on a whole animal, whole organ, hemorheological, microvascular, cellular, ultrastructural, and molecular level. The current projects include:
1) control of blood flow and flow distribution in the microcirculation,
2) the effects of long-term synthetic and biologic implants on substrate transport to tissues,
3) tissue engineering; combining isolated cells, especially adult stem cells, with biomaterials to form specialized composite structures for implantation, with particular emphasis on endothelial cell physiology and its alteration by isolation and seeding on biomaterials.
4) decreasing the thrombogenicity of synthetic blood vessels and other blood-contacting devices, and improving their overall performance and biocompatibility.
5) reducing tissue damage resulting from abnormal perfusion (e.g., relative ischemia, anoxia, etc.) and therapies which minimize ischemic damage.
6) biosensor function, particularly glucose sensors in normal and diabetics.
7) measurement of tissue blood flow and oxygenation as an indicator of tissue viability and functional potential.
8) development of biocompatible materials for soft tissue reconstruction or augmentation.
9) improving performance of glaucoma drainage devices by directing a more favorable foreign body reaction
10) wound healing; particularly internal healing around foreign materials and the effect and prevention of microbes around implanted devices.

Appointments and Affiliations

  • Associate Professor of Surgery
  • Assistant Research Professor in Cell Biology
  • Associate Professor of Biomedical Engineering
  • Core Faculty in Innovation & Entrepreneurship

Contact Information

  • Office Location: 479 & 487 Med Sci Res Bl 1, 203 Research Dr, 203 Research Dr, Durham, NC 27710
  • Office Phone: (919) 684-3929
  • Email Address:
  • Websites:


  • Ph.D. University of Virginia, 1979

Awards, Honors, and Distinctions

  • Keynote Speaker. First International COnference on Tattoo Safety. 2013
  • Board Member. International Liaison Committee of Microcirculation Societies. 1999
  • Founder. North Carolina Tissue Engineering & Regenerative Medicine Society. 1998
  • President. The Microcirculatory Society. 1998

Courses Taught

  • BES 301B: Research in BES
  • BME 493: Projects in Biomedical Engineering (GE)
  • CELLBIO 493: Research Independent Study

In the News

Representative Publications

  • Laux, P; Tralau, T; Tentschert, J; Blume, A; Dahouk, SA; Bäumler, W; Bernstein, E; Bocca, B; Alimonti, A; Colebrook, H; de Cuyper, C; Dähne, L; Hauri, U; Howard, PC; Janssen, P; Katz, L; Klitzman, B; Kluger, N; Krutak, L; Platzek, T; Scott-Lang, V; Serup, J; Teubner, W; Schreiver, I; Wilkniß, E; Luch, A, A medical-toxicological view of tattooing., Lancet (London, England), vol 387 no. 10016 (2016), pp. 395-402 [10.1016/s0140-6736(15)60215-x] [abs].
  • Koschwanez, HE; Yap, FY; Klitzman, B; Reichert, WM, In vitro and in vivo characterization of porous poly-L-lactic acid coatings for subcutaneously implanted glucose sensors., Journal of Biomedical Materials Research Part A, vol 87 no. 3 (2008), pp. 792-807 [10.1002/jbm.a.31824] [abs].
  • Prichard, HL; Reichert, W; Klitzman, B, IFATS collection: Adipose-derived stromal cells improve the foreign body response., Stem Cells (Dayton, Ohio), vol 26 no. 10 (2008), pp. 2691-2695 [10.1634/stemcells.2008-0140] [abs].
  • Kovach, SJ; Koger, KE; Klitzman, B; Germann, G; Levin, LS, Advantages of minimally invasive, balloon-dissector-assisted tissue expander placement: a clinical and experimental study., Annals of Plastic Surgery, vol 60 no. 1 (2008), pp. 89-97 [10.1097/SAP.0b013e318052ac32] [abs].
  • Hetrick, EM; Prichard, HL; Klitzman, B; Schoenfisch, MH, Reduced foreign body response at nitric oxide-releasing subcutaneous implants., Biomaterials, vol 28 no. 31 (2007), pp. 4571-4580 [10.1016/j.biomaterials.2007.06.036] [abs].
  • Baccarani, A; Yasui, K; Olbrich, KC; El-Sabbagh, A; Kovach, S; Follmar, KE; Erdmann, D; Levin, LS; Stamler, JS; Klitzman, B; Zenn, MR, Efficacy of ethyl nitrite in reversing surgical vasospasm., Journal of Reconstructive Microsurgery, vol 23 no. 5 (2007), pp. 257-262 [10.1055/s-2007-985206] [abs].
  • Norton, LW; Koschwanez, HE; Wisniewski, NA; Klitzman, B; Reichert, WM, Vascular endothelial growth factor and dexamethasone release from nonfouling sensor coatings affect the foreign body response., Journal of Biomedical Materials Research. Part A, vol 81 no. 4 (2007), pp. 858-869 [10.1002/jbm.a.31088] [abs].
  • Follmar, KE; Prichard, HL; DeCroos, FC; Wang, HT; Levin, LS; Klitzman, B; Olbrich, KC; Erdmann, D, Combined bone allograft and adipose-derived stem cell autograft in a rabbit model., Annals of Plastic Surgery, vol 58 no. 5 (2007), pp. 561-565 [10.1097/] [abs].
  • Prichard, HL; Reichert, WM; Klitzman, B, Adult adipose-derived stem cell attachment to biomaterials., Biomaterials, vol 28 no. 6 (2007), pp. 936-946 [10.1016/j.biomaterials.2006.09.012] [abs].
  • Heitmann, C; Khan, FN; Erdmann, D; Olbrich, KC; Adam Sharkawy, A; Klitzman, B, Vein graft anastomoses with magnets., Journal of Plastic, Reconstructive & Aesthetic Surgery : Jpras, vol 60 no. 12 (2007), pp. 1296-1301 [10.1016/j.bjps.2006.10.017] [abs].
  • Lanzen, J; Braun, RD; Klitzman, B; Brizel, D; Secomb, TW; Dewhirst, MW, Direct demonstration of instabilities in oxygen concentrations within the extravascular compartment of an experimental tumor., Cancer Research, vol 66 no. 4 (2006), pp. 2219-2223 [10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-03-2958] [abs].
  • Ko, J; Ross, J; Awad, H; Hurwitz, H; Klitzman, B, The effects of ZD6474, an inhibitor of VEGF signaling, on cutaneous wound healing in mice., Journal of Surgical Research, vol 129 no. 2 (2005), pp. 251-259 [10.1016/j.jss.2005.05.006] [abs].
  • Nablo, BJ; Prichard, HL; Butler, RD; Klitzman, B; Schoenfisch, MH, Inhibition of implant-associated infections via nitric oxide release., Biomaterials, vol 26 no. 34 (2005), pp. 6984-6990 [10.1016/j.biomaterials.2005.05.017] [abs].
  • Sorg, BS; Peltz, CD; Klitzman, B; Dewhirst, MW, Method for improved accuracy in endogenous urea recovery marker calibrations for microdialysis in tumors., Journal of Pharmacological and Toxicological Methods, vol 52 no. 3 (2005), pp. 341-349 [10.1016/j.vascn.2005.05.004] [abs].
  • Chan, BP; Liu, W; Klitzman, B; Reichert, WM; Truskey, GA, In vivo performance of dual ligand augmented endothelialized expanded polytetrafluoroethylene vascular grafts., Journal of Biomedical Materials Research. Part B, Applied Biomaterials, vol 72 no. 1 (2005), pp. 52-63 [10.1002/jbm.b.30114] [abs].
  • Dai, Q; Huang, J; Klitzman, B; Dong, C; Goldschmidt-Clermont, PJ; March, KL; Rokovich, J; Johnstone, B; Rebar, EJ; Spratt, SK; Case, CC; Kontos, CD; Annex, BH, Engineered zinc finger-activating vascular endothelial growth factor transcription factor plasmid DNA induces therapeutic angiogenesis in rabbits with hindlimb ischemia., Circulation, vol 110 no. 16 (2004), pp. 2467-2475 [10.1161/01.CIR.0000145139.53840.49] [abs].
  • Erdmann, D; Pippen, AM; Moquin, KJ; Sweis, R; Niklason, LE; Levin, LS; Olbrich, KC; Klitzman, B, Immunohistochemical identification of vascular endothelial growth factor in pig latissimus dorsi musculocutaneous flaps following ischemia-reperfusion injury., Annals of Plastic Surgery, vol 53 no. 4 (2004), pp. 398-403 [abs].
  • Erdmann, D; Sweis, R; Heitmann, C; Yasui, K; Olbrich, KC; Levin, LS; Sharkawy, AA; Klitzman, B, Side-to-side sutureless vascular anastomosis with magnets., Journal of Vascular Surgery, vol 40 no. 3 (2004), pp. 505-511 [10.1016/j.jvs.2004.05.026] [abs].
  • Wong, MS; Erdmann, D; Sweis, R; Pöllmann, C; Farrar, M; Georgiade, GS; Levin, LS; Olbrich, KC; Klitzman, B, Basic fibroblast growth factor expression following surgical delay of rat transverse rectus abdominis myocutaneous flaps., Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, vol 113 no. 7 (2004), pp. 2030-2036 [abs].
  • Erdmann, D; Sweis, R; Wong, MS; Niklason, LE; du Laney, TV; Levin, LS; Klitzman, B; Olbrich, KC, Vascular endothelial growth factor expression in pig latissimus dorsi myocutaneous flaps after ischemia reperfusion injury., Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, vol 111 no. 2 (2003), pp. 775-780 [10.1097/01.prs.0000041534.99907.75] [abs].
  • Erdmann, D; Sweis, R; Wong, MS; Eyler, CE; Olbrich, KC; Levin, LS; Germann, G; Klitzman, B, [Current perspectives of orthogonal polarization spectral imaging in plastic surgery]., Chirurg, vol 73 no. 8 (2002), pp. 827-832 [abs].
  • Sachse, RE; Fink, SA; Klitzman, B, Multimodality evaluation of pressure relief surfaces., Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, vol 102 no. 7 (1998), pp. 2381-2387 [abs].
  • Sachse, RE; Fink, SA; Klitzman, B, Comparison of supine and lateral positioning on various clinically used support surfaces., Annals of Plastic Surgery, vol 41 no. 5 (1998), pp. 513-518 [abs].
  • Klitzman, B; Kalinowski, C; Glasofer, SL; Rugani, L, Pressure ulcers and pressure relief surfaces., Clinics in Plastic Surgery, vol 25 no. 3 (1998), pp. 443-450 [abs].
  • Sharkawy, AA; Klitzman, B; Truskey, GA; Reichert, WM, Engineering the tissue which encapsulates subcutaneous implants. I. Diffusion properties., Journal of Biomedical Materials Research, vol 37 no. 3 (1997), pp. 401-412 [;2-e" >10.1002/(sici)1097-4636(19971205)37:3<401::aid-jbm11>;2-e] [abs].
  • Ritter, EF; Kim, YB; Reischl, HP; Serafin, D; Rudner, AM; Klitzman, B, Heparin coating of vascular prostheses reduces thromboemboli., Surgery, vol 122 no. 5 (1997), pp. 888-892 [abs].
  • Ritter, EF; Axelrod, M; Minn, KW; Eades, E; Rudner, AM; Serafin, D; Klitzman, B, Modulation of ultraviolet light-induced epidermal damage: beneficial effects of tocopherol., Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, vol 100 no. 4 (1997), pp. 973-980 [abs].
  • Viscardi, PJ; Page, EA; Clark, HG; Serafin, D; Klitzman, B, Iloprost in alginate decreases the thrombogenicity of expanded polytetrafluoroethylene., Journal of Reconstructive Microsurgery, vol 13 no. 4 (1997), pp. 303-306 [10.1055/s-2007-1000240] [abs].
  • Klitzman, B, Rheology and the regulation of oxygen delivery., Microsurgery, vol 15 no. 6 (1994), pp. 369-373 [abs].