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Portrait of Harvey G. Klein
Harvey G. Klein, MD

Chief, Transfusion Medicine

Transfusion Medicine

BS, Harvard College
MD, The Johns Hopkins School of Medicine

Phone: 301-496-9702

Portrait of Harvey G. Klein
Harvey G. Klein, MD

Chief, Transfusion Medicine

Transfusion Medicine

BS, Harvard College
MD, The Johns Hopkins School of Medicine

Phone: 301-496-9702

Dr. Harvey G. Klein is Chief, Department of Transfusion Medicine, which includes four Sections: Blood Donor and Apheresis Services, Transfusion Laboratory and HLA Services, Transfusion–Transmitted Infectious Diseases, and The Center for Cellular Engineering at the NIH Clinical Center.

Dr. Klein earned his undergraduate degree from Harvard College in 1965 and his medical degree from The Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in 1969. He completed a medical internship and residency at the Johns Hopkins Hospital as well as fellowship training in Hematology. He then came to NIH as a USPHS Commissioned Corps Officer and Staff Fellow with the NHLBI (then NHLI) in 1973 where he was Special Assistant to the Director of the Blood Division.

Dr. Klein transferred to the Clinical Center Blood Bank in 1975 where he completed a fellowship in Blood Banking and Immunohematology and remained on the staff as Deputy Department Head. During the following decade, he served as attending physician on the NHLBI Hematology Service where he performed collaborative research involving the physiology of blood transfusion.

Dr. Klein performed the first automated red cell exchange transfusion in the US for patients with sickle cell disease and with collaborators studied the physiology of this procedure. He also developed techniques for isolating young red blood cells to improve transfusion of chronically transfused patients, and studied the physiology of phlebotomy in patients with congenital polycythemia as well as in subjects with high altitude polycythemia in the Peruvian Andes.

In 1983, Dr. Klein was tenured, named Department Head, and coined the term “Transfusion Medicine” (JAMA 1987) for the department to describe the many activities beyond those of the traditional blood bank.

During the following decade, he established the first fully automated Plateletpheresis Center and initiated studies of the effects of platelet- and leukapheresis on blood donors and patients. He created a Section to develop cellular therapies and established the Department as one of the founding members of the National Marrow Donor Program. Dr. Klein’s staff expanded the activities of the Infectious Disease Section, which had been leader in post transfusion hepatitis, to include studies of the newly emerging disease now known as AIDS. Dr. Klein’s research remains broadly focused on transfusion safety and involves collaborations with multiple NIH Institutes and Centers as well as with other departments within the Clinical Center and with institutions beyond NIH. These studies include such diverse areas as cellular engineering and genotyping of cells for transfusion including use of the latest Next Generation Sequencing techniques.

Dr. Klein is devoted to Transfusion Medicine subspecialty training. He has helped to establish training collaborations with Johns Hopkins, Children’s National Medical Center, Georgetown, and the Walter Reed National Medical Center. During his tenure, the number of fellows has tripled, and program graduates hold leadership positions in academic medicine and regulatory affairs across the country.


Klein HG and Anstee DJ. Mollison's Blood Transfusion in Clinical Medicine. 12th Edition.Blackwell, London, 2014

Selected Book Chapters

Panch SR, Klein HG. Hemapheresis. In: Hoffman R. Benz, Silberstein LE, Heslop H, Weitz J,Anastasi J, Salama M, Abutalib S (eds): Hematology: Principles and Practice, 7th Edition. Elsevier :Philadelphia (2018) pp. 1781-91.

Klein HG. Blood Transfusion. In: Rodgers and Young (eds) The Bethesda Handbook of Clinical Hematology 3rd Edition. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins (2018).

Murphy M, Klein HG. Blood Component and Pharmacologic Therapy for Hemostatic disorders. In: Kitchens, Kessler, Konkle (eds) Consultative Hemostasis and Thrombosis, Fourth edition. Elsevier (2018)

Klein, HG. Immunohematology and Blood Transfusion. In Isselbacher KJ, Braunwald E, Wilson JD, Martin JB, Fauci AS, Kasper DL (eds): Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, McGraw-Hill Inc, New York l993: p 2377.

Selected Journal Articles

Montemayor-Garcia C, Karagianni P, Stiles DA, Reese EM, Smellie DA, Loy DA, Levy KY, Nwokocha M, Bueno MU, Miller JL, Klein HG. Genomic coordinates and continental distribution of 120 blood group variants reported by the 1000 Genomes Project.Transfusion. 2018;58:2693-2704

Remy K, Solomon S, Kim-Shapiro D, Warren HS, Gladwin M, Klein HG, Pockros B, Lertora J, Cortes Puch I, Sun J, Natanson C. Haptoglobin Improves Shock, Lung Injury, and Survival in Canine Pneumonia. JCI Insight. 2018;20;3. pii: 123013. doi: 10.1172/jci.insight.123013. [Epub ahead of print]PMID: 30232287

Klein HG, Hrouda JC, Epstein JE. Sustainability of the United States Blood System. N Engl J Med 2017;377:1485-1488.

Suffredini D, Xu W, Sun J, et al. Parenteral Irons vs. Transfused Red Cells for Treatment of Anemia in a Canine Model of Pneumonia, Transfusion 2017;57(10):2338-2347.

Klein HG. Blood Collection and Use in the United States: You Can’t Manage What You Can’t Measure. Transfusion 2016;56:2157-9.

Solomon SB, Cortés-Puch I, Sun J, Remy KE, Wang D, Feng J, Khan SS, Sinchar D, Kim-Shapiro DB, Klein HG, Natanson C. Transfused Older Stored Red Blood Cells Improve the Clinical Course and Outcome in a Canine Lethal Hemorrhage/Reperfusion Model. Transfusion 2015; 55(11):2552-63.

Klein HG, Flegel WA, Natanson C. Red Cell Transfusion: Precision versus Imprecision Medicine. JAMA. 2015;314(15):1557-8.

Cortés-Puch I, Wang D, Sun J, Solomon SB, Remy KE, Fernandez M, Feng J, Kanias T, Bellavia L, Sinchar D, Perlegas A, Solomon MA, Kelley WE, Popovsky MA, Gladwin MT, Kim-Shapiro DB, Klein HG, Natanson C. Washing older blood units before transfusion reduces plasma iron and improves outcomes in experimental canine pneumonia. Blood 2013;55(11):2552-63.

Solomon SB, Wang D, Sun J, Kanias T, Feng J, Helms CC, Solomon MA, Alimchandani M, Quezado M, Gladwin MT, Kim-Shapiro DB, Klein HG, Natanson C. Mortality increases after massive exchange transfusion with older stored blood in canines with experimental pneumonia. Blood. 2013;121:1663-72.

Klein HG. Should Blood Be an Essential Medicine? N Engl J Med 2013;368 (3):199-201.

Alter HJ, Klein HG. The hazards of blood transfusion in historical perspective. Blood 2008;112(7):2617-2626.

Leitman SF, Klein HG, Melpolder JJ, Shih JW, Read EJ, Harvarth L, Darr F, Foy JL, Alter HJ. Clinical implications of positive tests for antibodies to human immunodeficiency virus type 1 in asymptomatic blood donors. N Engl of Med l989; 32l:9l7-23.

Klein HG. Transfusion Medicine: The evolution of a new discipline. JAMA l987: 258: 2l08-2l09.

Klein HG. Blood Transfusion and Athletics; Games People Play. New Engl J Med l985; 3l2:854-856.

Bracey A, Klein HG, Chambers S, Corash L. Simplified Selective Isolation of Young Red Cells for Chronic Transfusion Support. Blood l983; 6l:l068-l07l.

Klein HG, Garner RJ, Miller DM, Rosen SL, Statham NJ, Winslow RM. Automated partial exchange transfusion in sickle cell anemia. Transfusion. 1980;20:578-84.

Miller DM, Winslow RM, Klein HG, Wilson KC, Statham NJ, Brown FL, Fulmer J. Improved Exercise Performance after Exchange Transfusion in Subjects with Sickle Cell Anemia. Blood l980;56:ll27-32.

  • AABB Fantus Medal for Lifetime Achievements, 2017
  • Presidential Award of the International Society of Blood Transfusion, 2016
  • NIH Director's Award, 2014
  • American Medical Writers Association – Medical Textbook Award, 2006
  • Emily Cooley Award of the American Association of Blood Banks, 2001
  • NIH Director's Award, 2000
  • HHS Secretary's Distinguished Services Award, 2000
  • Cohn de Laval Medal, World Apheresis Association, 1996
  • Allen Latham Award, European Society for Haemapheresis, 1995
  • NIH Clinical Center Director's Award, 1992
  • Meritorious Service Medal, Public Health Service, 1989
  • PHS Equal Opportunity Achievement Award, 1985
  • PHS Commendation Medal, 1980

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This page last updated on 03/14/2019

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