Headshot photo of Owen J.T. McCarty, Ph.D., FAHA

Owen J.T. McCarty, Ph.D., FAHA

  • Professor of Biomedical Engineering, School of Medicine
  • Gordon Moore Endowed Chair of Biomedical Engineering, Biomedical Engineering, School of Medicine
  • Cell and Developmental Biology Graduate Program, School of Medicine
  • Biomedical Engineering Graduate Program, School of Medicine
  • Program in Molecular and Cellular Biosciences, School of Medicine


A native of Rochester, Dr. McCarty received his B.S. in Chemical Engineering from SUNY Buffalo, and a Ph.D. degree in Chemical Engineering from Johns Hopkins University, where his research focused on the identification and characterization of tumor cell receptors for blood platelets and leukocytes. He performed his postdoctoral research on platelet cell biology in the Pharmacology Department at the University of Oxford and University of Birmingham, UK in the group of Dr. Steve Watson. Dr. McCarty joined Oregon Health & Science University in 2005, where he holds an appointment as a Professor in the Departments of Biomedical Engineering and Cell, Developmental & Cancer Biology and the Division of Hematology & Medical Oncology in the OHSU School of Medicine. Dr. McCarty serves as the Chair of the Biomedical Engineering Department and a fellow of the American Heart Association.

Research focus:

Hemostatic plug formation upon blood vessel breach is initiated by platelet recruitment, activation and aggregation in concert with thrombin generation and fibrin formation. However, a similar process can also lead to pathological processes including deep vein thrombosis, ischemic stroke, or myocardial infarction, among others. We have developed narrow mechanism-specific agents targeting the intrinsic pathway of coagulation and demonstrated that experimental thrombosis and platelet production in primates is interrupted by selective inhibition of activation of coagulation factor (F)XI by FXIIa. Our current studies are focused on defining the role of the endothelium in inactivating FXI, as well as studies on whether inhibiting FXI is beneficial in a non-human primate model of sepsis. We have recently published the first data from our Phase 1 clinical trial on the safety of inhibition of FXI, and are testing the efficacy of FXI inhibition in dialysis in a Phase 2 clinical trial. The understanding of the mechanisms by which the intrinsic pathway of coagulation promotes thrombus formation may support the rationale for the development of selective, safe and effective antithrombotic strategies targeting FXI.

Education and training

    • B.S., 1997, State University of New York
    • Ph.D., 2002, Johns Hopkins University

Memberships and associations:

  • Inaugural Douglas Strain Professorship


Selected publications

  • Verhoef JJF, Barendrecht AD, Nickel KF, de Maat S, Keene E, Labberton L, McCarty OJ, Schiffelers R, Heijnen HF, Hendrickx AP, Schellekens H, Fens MH, Renne T, Maas C. Polyphosphate nanoparticles on the platelet surface trigger contact system activation. Blood 2017;129(12):1707-1717. (with Editorial; Cover)
  • Mitrugno A, Sylman JL, Ngo AT, Pang J, Sears RC, Williams CD, McCarty OJ. Aspirin therapy reduces the ability of platelets to promote colon and pancreatic cancer cell proliferation: implications for the oncoprotein c-MYC. American Journal of Physiology: Cell Physiology 2017 Feb 1;312(2):C176-C189. (Selected as the AJP: Cell Image of the Week; Featured in AJP News)
  • Zilberman-Rudenko J, Sylman JL, Lakshmanan HH, McCarty OJ*, Maddala J*. Dynamics of blood flow and thrombus formation in a multi-bypass microfluidic ladder network. Cellular and Molecular Bioengineering 2017 Feb;10(1):16-29. *equally contributing senior authors (with Editorial)
  • Zilberman-Rudenko J, Itakura A, Maddala J, Baker-Groberg SM, Vetter R, Tucker EI, Gruber A, Gerdes C, McCarty OJ. Biorheology of platelet activation in the bloodstream distal to thrombus formation. Cellular and Molecular Bioengineering 2016 Dec;9(4):496-508.


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