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Interim Executive Vice Chancellor Matthias Salathe, M.D.

Dr. Salathe serves as interim executive vice chancellor for KU Medical Center, which is comprised of the schools of Health Professions, Medicine and Nursing, as well as a robust research enterprise.

Portrait of Matthias Salathe

Matthias Salathe, M.D., the Peter T. Bohan Chair of Internal Medicine and professor of pulmonary and critical care medicine, assumed the role of interim executive vice chancellor for the University of Kansas Medical Center in April 2024. Salathe has been the vice chancellor for research at KU Medical Center since 2022.

As interim executive vice chancellor, Salathe oversees the education, research, patient care and outreach missions of the schools of Health Professions, Medicine and Nursing, which have a total annual enrollment of more than 3,800 students. He is responsible for a workforce of more than 1,700 faculty and more than 3,500 staff; a significant research enterprise with funding of more than $200 million; and activities in every county in the state of Kansas.

Salathe joined KU School of Medicine in 2018 as chair of the Department of Internal Medicine and has helped the department rapidly expand its portfolio of research funded by the National Institutes of Health. Salathe holds a joint appointment with The University of Kansas Health System, where he is clinical service chief of internal medicine.

Prior to joining KU, Salathe served as chief of the Division of Pulmonary, Allergy, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine and professor of medicine at the University of Miami School of Medicine. He developed and taught the respiratory system module at Miami, where he was a celebrated faculty member, selected by students to receive the excellence in teaching award 11 times from 2002-2018. Salathe also served as director of the Adult Cystic Fibrosis Center at the University of Miami from 2005-2018.

Salathe earned his medical degree from the University of Basel School of Medicine in Basel, Switzerland. He completed residency programs in anesthesiology and internal medicine in Switzerland and a fellowship in pulmonary and critical care medicine and internal medicine residency at the University of Miami School of Medicine. Parallel to his clinical training, Salathe completed a postdoctoral fellowship in molecular cell pharmacology and pulmonary medicine, funded by Howard Hughes Medical Institute.

With 25 years of research continuously funded by federal and foundation sources, Salathe’s contributions extend from the bench to the bedside. His discoveries include seminal observations in cilia and mucociliary function and innate airway host defense and airway ion transport studies. His clinical research has focused on improving treatments for patients experiencing airway inflammation due to cystic fibrosis, chronic bronchitis, COVID-19 and other diseases. Most recently, his research into vaping has revealed how vapors cause mucociliary dysfunction via activation of TRP channels and airway inflammation. Motivated by his research, Salathe has become outspoken about the harmful effects of e-cigarettes and vaping, presenting locally and nationally to groups of students, community members and health care providers.