About Shannon Tessier, PhD

Shannon Tessier, PhD, is an assistant professor with the Center for Engineering in Medicine and Surgery at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School and the director of surgical research in the Department of Surgery at Mass General. Her primary research focus is on organ transplantation and cryopreservation of complex tissues.

In 2014, she received her PhD in molecular biology and biochemistry, during which she studied natural suspended animation across diverse phylogeny. As a postdoctoral fellow, she continued her training in biomedical engineering, focusing on translating these lessons from suspended animation to the bedside. Currently, Dr. Tessier is leading a research profile aimed at overcoming barriers in solid organ transplantation and cryobiology, including:

  • Introducing the zebrafish as a new model system for experimental transplantation
  • Developing new approaches to limit ex vivo organ injury and quantitative assessment of organs destined for transplantation
  • Cryopreservation of complex tissues to ensure the implementation of cutting-edge medical technologies

Dr. Tessier has received several scholarly awards, including NIH K99/R00 Pathway to Independence award, American Heart Association Career Development Award, Eleanor and Miles Shore Fellowship, and MGH Claflin Distinguished Scholar Award. She has served on national and international review panels and editorial boards, and served the Society for Cryobiology as governor and executive co-chair for Cryo2023. Dr. Tessier’s lab has received funding from the National Institute of Health, American Heart Association, industrial partners, and others.

Dr. Tessier also serves in a leadership position at Massachusetts General Hospital as the director of surgical research for the Department of Surgery. In this role, she is:

  • Supporting all faculty and trainee academic efforts
  • Collecting and organizing information to better leverage collective resources
  • Identifying areas of growth and development
  • Reviewing and providing advice on strategic goals as well as research policies and procedures for the department

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