Clinical Research

The Emory Program in Critical Care (EPICC) is the outgrowth of a long-standing interest in intensive care, which grew from our broad and diverse clinical foundation of patient care spanning multiple intensive care units (ICUs) in the Emory-affiliated hospitals. Our research interests began with acute lung injury (ALI) and acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS)-related conditions that cause severe hypoxemic respiratory failure and too often result in morbid complications or death. From this beginning, we have broadened our interests to include various etiologic conditions that cause ALI/ARDS, such as sepsis, trauma, pneumonia and blood product transfusion. Each of these areas has also branched in different directions, to investigate factors that influence the outcome of ALI/ARDS or related conditions, such as chronic alcohol abuse, diabetes or HIV.

Investigators in our group were the first to identify chronic alcohol abuse as a significant risk factor for both developing ALI/ARDS and for having worse outcomes after its onset.  Since that time it has been recognized that chronic alcohol abuse predisposes to multiple organ dysfunction syndrome with sepsis and to greater accumulation of pulmonary edema in patients with ALI/ARDS.  With the Emory Alcohol and Lung Biology Center, our group has found substantial alterations in pulmonary antioxidant status that lead to altered permeability of alveolar-capillary barrier, and thus contribute to the development of ALI/ARDS.  In addition, our group identified the association between diabetes mellitus and reduced incidence of ALI/ARDS - a finding since confirmed by at least three other investigations. 

Our work in these areas has spanned from simple observational studies to national epidemiologic investigations to multi-centered randomized, controlled clinical trials.  We have also expanded our areas of expertise to include venous thromboembolism and ventilator-associated pneumonia.

For further information on our research, please see topics below:

Fluid Therapy in Acute Lung Injury

Venous Thromboembolism

Stem Cells in Sepsis and Acute Lung Injury

Ventilator-Associated Pneumonia

Diabetes and Acute Lung Injury

Gut Apoptosis and Sepsis

HIV Disease and Acute Lung Injury

The Intersection of Cancer and Sepsis

Critical Care Epidemiology

Vitamin D in Critically Ill Patients

 Research Contacts:

Greg Martin

Greg Martin, MD, MSc, Director of Research,
Professor of Medicine

David Murphy

David Murphy, MD, PhD, Director of Quality,
Assistant Professor of Medicine