An internationally acclaimed leader in translational medicine and cardiovascular research and training, Dr. Mark has made fundamental contributions to autonomic neurovascular biology, as well as to the University of Iowa.
Allyn Mark acquired his loyalty to The University of Iowa and the Carver College of Medicine from an unlikely source: his father, a native Nebraskan who received his medical education in that state, but practiced medicine for decades in western and northern Iowa. Mark’s loyalty in turn proved a boon to the institution he has served as scientist, clinician, teacher and administrator.
The scientific achievements that distinguish Mark’s contributions have advanced knowledge of the brain’s role in regulating cardiovascular function and blood pressure, as well as the pathogenesis of hypertension and heart failure. Mark is nationally recognized not only for the originality of his research but also for translating basic research to humans and training a new generation of physician-scientists.
A central theme in Mark’s career is the scholarly creativity he has applied to his work. “One thinks of medicine as a profession you try to master and then practice,” he said. “But as a young physician I became enamored with the opportunity provided by medical research to pursue creativity and play with ideas.”
After joining the UI faculty in 1969, Mark quickly rose to leadership positions within the Department of Internal Medicine and the College. As a young faculty member he directed the Clinical Research Center, and later led the Cardiovascular Division for 19 years and served as associate dean for research for 11 years.
Mark credits much of his success to the collegiality he has enjoyed with both senior and junior colleagues in the Cardiovascular Center under the leadership of François Abboud 61R internal medicine. He counts as mentors many of the College’s luminaries from the past half-century, including Lewis January and John Eckstein 50MD.
Mark said his interactions with colleagues and trainees and his engagement in national and international scientific societies have enlarged his world and given his career a continuing source of renewal and vitality.
The Distinguished Alumni Award is the highest honor that the UI Carver College of Medicine bestows upon its outstanding graduates. Established in 1998, this awards program recognizes our former students and colleagues who have transcended their fundamental roles as health care providers, scientists and educators to become influential participants in the advancement of the art and science of medicine. Excellence in these areas brings pride and distinction to The University of Iowa and our Carver College of Medicine.
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