Karen Hasty, PhD, a professor, researcher, and director of Basic Research in the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery and Biomedical Engineering/Campbell Clinic in the College of Medicine at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, has been named among the 2021 Super Women in Business by the Memphis Business Journal. The annual list honors women business leaders for their career accomplishments and work in the Memphis community.
“I am thrilled to receive this honor,” said Dr. Hasty, who holds the George Thomas Wilhelm Endowed Professorship in Orthopaedic Surgery. “It allows me to have a new platform to bring attention to many philanthropic projects, while continuing to encourage young women to consider medical careers in orthopaedic surgery or in academia.”
Dr. Hasty’s philanthropic efforts include establishing a summer internship for undergraduate women called the Kappa Delta Foundation Orthopaedic Research Internship, which encourages them to consider orthopaedic surgery as a career option. It provides stipends, housing, and research funding for selected participants. She has also served as the medical chair for the West Tennessee Board of the Arthritis Foundation since 2017.
Because of her professional appointment, Dr. Hasty holds a dual position with UTHSC and the Memphis VA Medical Center, where she does basic science research. Studying arthritis for more than four decades, her current studies focus on exploring new therapies to interrupt the disease’s progression and stimulate repair of joint destruction. Dr. Hasty’s research efforts have been funded by the VA, the National Institutes of Health, the Department of Defense, and the Arthritis Foundation.
She is currently in a research collaboration with Revotek Co., Ltd., in the Memphis Institute of Regenerative Medicine (MIRM). The project titled, “MIRM Project 3: Stem Cell-Enhanced Tissue Regeneration: Engineering of Vascularized Bone/Cartilage Graft from Adipose-Derived Stem Cells,” will utilize Revotek’s cell encapsulation technology of Biosynspheres and bioprinting for basic and translational research in stem cell regenerative medicine.
Dr. Hasty earned her Bachelor of Science degree in microbiology from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville and received her MS and PhD degrees in anatomy from UTHSC. She began working at the university in 1977, after a stint at Boston Children’s Hospital, where she studied hemoglobin A1c, a marker that determines long-term control of blood glucose in diabetes.