Dr. Karp was raised near Cleveland, OH. He obtained his bachelor's degrees from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and his medical and doctoral degrees from Washington University in St. Louis. He also completed his residency and clinical fellowship training at Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis before joining the NIH as a research fellow. He has been on the faculty of UT Southwestern since 1991. Dr. Karp's research has focused on the control of lymphocyte activation. He has studied the role of plasma proteins, termed complement, in the stimulation of B lymphocytes. This pathway is important in the protection of individuals from bacterial infection, and preventing autoimmune diseases such as systemic lupus erythematosus. Dr. Karp has also studied the effects of oxidative stress, a by-product of inflammation, tobacco smoke, and air pollution, on the immune system. Dr. Karp is Chief of the Rheumatic Diseases Division within the Department of Internal Medicine and directs clinical research in rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, and systemic lupus erythematosus.


Medical School
Washington University in St. Louis (1984)
Washington University Barnes Hospital (1985), Internal Medicine
Washington University Barnes Hospital (1986), Internal Medicine
Washington University Barnes Hospital (1987), Rheumatology

Specialty Areas

Clinical Interest

  • Abnormal Antinuclear Antibody (ANA) Titer
  • Connective Tissue Disease
  • Dermatomyositis
  • Elevated Antinuclear Antibody (ANA)
  • Lupus
  • Mixed Connective Tissue Disease
  • Myositis
  • Positive Antinuclear Antibody (ANA)
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Sjogren's Disease
  • Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE)
  • Systemic Sclerosis

Research Interest

  • Ability of the complement system to regulate immune responses
  • Development of Data Sharing Methods in Biology
  • Genetics of human autoimmune diseases
  • Role of oxidative stress in the regulation of immunity


Featured Publications LegendFeatured Publications

Protein array profiles for insights into systemic lupus erythematosus and incomplete lupus syndromes
Quan-Zhen Li, Jinchun Zhou, Amy Wandstrat, Ferdicia Carr-Johnson, Valerie Branch, David Karp, Chandra Mohan, Edward Wakeland, and Nancy Olsen Clin Exp Immunol 2007 147 60-70
Profiling populations at risk for systemic lupus erythematosus
A.E. Wandstrat, F. Carr-Johnson, V. Branch, H. Gray, A.-M. Fairhurst, A. Reimold, D. Karp, E.K. Wakeland, and N.J. Olsen J. Autoimmunity 2006 27 153-160
Oxidative stress promotes polarization of human T cell differentiation towards a T helper 2 phenotype
M.R. King, A.S. Ismail, L.S. Davis, and D.R. Karp J. Immunol 2006 176 2765-2772
Complement component C3d-Ag complexes can either augment or inhibit B lymphocyte activation and humoral immunity in mice depending on the degree of CD21/CD19 complex engagement
Y. Lee, K.M. Haas, D.O. Gor, X. Ding, D.R. Karp, N.S. Greenspan, J.C. Poe, T.F. Tedder J. Immunol 2005 175 8011-8023
FcγRIIB mediates C-reactive protein inhibition of endothelial NO synthase
C. Mineo, A.K. Gormley, I.S. Yuhanna, S. Osborne-Lawrence, L. L. Gibson, L. Hahner, R.V. Shohet, S. Black, J.E. Salmon, D. Samols, D.R., Karp, G.D. Thomas, P. W. Shaul Circ. Res 2005 97 1124-1131

Professional Associations/Affiliations

  • American Association of Immunologists
  • American College of Physicians
  • American College of Rheumatology