Paul Francis Gulyassy

flowerPaul Gulyassy, M.D., emeritus professor, leader and first chief of the Division of Nephrology at UC Davis, passed away this summer.

Colleagues remember Gulyassy as a pioneer, an accomplished scholar, a scientist, and a compassionate physician who had a warm place in his heart for people with end-stage kidney disease.

Gulyassy established California’s first dialysis clinic in 1962, and with surgeon John Najarian started the state’s first kidney transplant program at UC San Francisco. He supported state legislation that eventually led to federal funding of dialysis, and helped develop the hollow fiber kidney currently used worldwide.

When he was recruited to join the fledgling UC Davis faculty in 1972 as division chief, Gulyassy was broadly recognized as an investigator in kidney physiology and kidney replacement by dialysis.

With NIH backing, he was the first to measure amino acid levels in the serum of ESKD patients, which led to further investigations at UC Davis of the now well-recognized generalized defect in albumin binding that contributes to uremic toxicity and is poorly responsive to dialysis.

At UC Davis Gulyassy also established Sacramento’s first peritoneal dialysis clinic. He was recently honored with an endowed professorship in his name that supports research linking the basic sciences with clinical nephrology research.

Gulyassy leaves behind his wife, June, two daughters, Adrienne and Susan, three grandchildren, and a host of admirers.