2016 / Funeral of Dr. Paul Terasaki was held in Santa Monica, Feb. 6

*Funeral services will be held on Saturday, February 6 at 2:00pm at the First United Methodist Church of Santa Monica, 1008 11th Street, Santa Monica, California 90403.

*A memorial service is planned for Sunday, March 6, 2016 at UCLA Royce Hall starting at 11:00am.

World renowned scientist and benefactor for Japanese American community, Dr. Paul Tersaki passed away at the age of 86 on Jan. 25

The Announcement of Terasaki Foundation Laboratory/Terasaki Research Institute on January 25, 2016

Dr. Paul Ichiro Terasaki (1929 - 2016)

Dr. Paul Ichiro Terasaki (1929 – 2016)

It is with great sadness and regret that we inform our global HLA & Transplant colleagues that Dr. Paul I. Terasaki, HLA Pioneer, founder of One Lambda, Inc. and founder of the Terasaki Foundation, passed away this morning at his home in Los Angeles.

Dr. Terasaki was born in Los Angeles in September 1929. He spent three high school years during World War II interned with his family and other Japanese Americans in the Gila River War Relocation Center in Arizona. He later earned his bachelor’s, master’s, and doctorate in zoology from UCLA and was professor of surgery in the Department of Surgery.

In 1964, Dr. Terasaki developed the microcytotoxicity assay, a tissue-typing test to match organ transplant donors and recipients. The test required only 1 microliter each of antisera and 1 microliter of lymphocytes (human white cells) used to identify human leukocyte antigens (HLA).

The test was adopted as the international standard for tissue typing. He has also focused on the study of the humoral theory of transplant rejection, which states that antibodies cause allograft rejection.

Dr. Terasaki published many books, and scientific papers in transplantation.

He received many awards including the prestigious Medawar Prize. The prize, named after Nobel Laureate, Sir Peter Medawar, recognizes the outstanding investigators whose contributions have had a profound influence on the field of organ transplantation. The Medawar Prize is universally considered to be commensurate with the most outstanding world prizes for scientific achievement.

In 1969, Dr. Terasaki established the UCLA Tissue Typing Laboratory and directed the laboratory until 1999 when he retired.

In 1984, he founded One Lambda, Inc.; a company to develop and provide transplant centers worldwide with the tools they needed to better match their patients and monitor them pre/post-transplant.

In 1999, following his retirement from UCLA, he founded the Terasaki Foundation, a research center dedicated to cancer immunotherapy and the study of humoral immunity and transplantation. In 2012, he sold One Lambda, Inc. to Thermo Fisher Scientific.

Dr. Terasaki is survived by his wife Hisako, his four children, Mark, Keith, Taiji, Emiko and his 6 grandchildren. At this time, the family has requested privacy while they go through this very difficult time. A memorial service is being planned and an announcement will be sent at a later date.

The funeral of Dr. Terasaki at First United Methodist Church of Santa Monica (Cultural News Photo)

The funeral of Dr. Terasaki at First United Methodist Church of Santa Monica (Cultural News Photo)

Dr. Paul Terasaki’s Funeral

The funeral of Dr. Paul Ichiro Terasaki was held at the First  United Methodist Church of Santa Monica, 1008 11th Street, Santa Monica, CA 90403, on Saturday, Feb. 6 from 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm. Near 900 people attended the funeral.

Closing Hymn “What a Friend We Have in Jesus”


Final Tribute