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Michael Parmacek

Frank Wister Thomas Professor of Medicine

Michael Parmacek


Dr. Michael S. Parmacek is the Frank Wister Thomas Professor of Medicine and Chair of the Department of Medicine at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania.  He also serves as the Founding Director of the University of Pennsylvania Cardiovascular Institute.  


Dr. Parmacek graduated magna cum laude from Tufts University and obtained his M.D. from Northwestern University Medical School. He performed residency training in Internal Medicine at the University of Michigan and Cardiovascular Disease fellowship training at Northwestern University.  Following his clinical training, Dr. Parmacek performed a postdoctoral research fellowship in molecular cardiology at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute at the University of Michigan.  

He was appointed to the faculty of the University of Michigan from 1987-1992 and the University of Chicago from 1992-1998, serving as Co-Director of the Cardiology fellowship training program.  In 1998, Dr. Parmacek was recruited to the University of Pennsylvania as Chief of the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine.  During his tenure (1998-2014), Penn’s Cardiovascular Medicine division ascended to the top tier of national programs.  In 2005, Dr. Parmacek was appointed as the Director of the newly established University of Pennsylvania Cardiovascular Institute.  In 2014, Dr. Parmacek was appointed as the 25th Chair of the University of Pennsylvania Department of Medicine; the nation’s first Department of Medicine.  


Dr. Parmacek is internationally recognized for his pioneering research studies in cardiovascular cell and molecular biology.  Over the course of his career, he has made multiple seminal discoveries which have impacted directly on understanding the molecular and genetic basis of congenital heart disease, aortic disease and atherosclerosis.  He has published over ninety manuscripts in high-impact journals including Science, Cell and the New England Journal of Medicine.  


Dr. Parmacek was chosen as an Established Investigator by the American Heart Association and he was elected Fellow of the AHA, American College of Cardiology and American College of Physicians.  He also served as President of the Association of Professors of Cardiology.  Dr. Parmacek has been elected to the American Society of Clinical Investigation and the American Association of Physicians.  


In 2009, Dr. Parmacek was appointed by the United States Secretary of Health and Human Services to the Advisory Council of the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute of the NIH.

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