26 years after coming to the United States from a remote area in Southwest China, Zhongjun Jon Wu, PhD, has become one of the leading bioengineering scientists, and he has earned his place among top faculty at the University of Maryland School of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM). On March 1, he was invested at Westminster Hall as the Peter G. Angelos Distinguished Professor in Entrepreneurial Surgical Sciences.
“I am so honored and so humbled, to receive this prestigious endowment,” Dr. Wu said.
Bartley Griffith, MD, FACS, FRCS, the Thomas E. and Alice Marie Hales Distinguished Professor in Transplant Surgery, has worked closely with Dr. Wu throughout his career. “I’ve been waiting for this opportunity for 35 years. Without him, I would not have been successful,” said Dr. Griffith.
Other speakers at the ceremony included: William J. Federspiel, PhD, the William Kepler Whiteford Professor, Department of Bioengineering, Director, Medical Devices Laboratory, McGowan Institute of Regenerative Medicine, University of Pittsburgh; and Ned Hwang, PhD, the James L. Knight Professor of Biomedical Engineering Emeritus, University of Miami.
The Angelos Professorship was established through a leadership gift from Mr. Peter Angelos, and significant contributions from Thomas & Alice-Marie Hales, Hamish and Christine Osborne, the Abell Foundation, and the State of Maryland’s E-Nnovation Initiative Fund (MEIF).
“The honor associated with the appointment to an endowed position has remained unchanged for the last 500 years and is recognized as one of the highest tributes that an institution can bestow upon its most distinguished faculty,” said E. Albert Reece, MD, PhD, MBA, Executive Vice President for Medical Affairs, UM Baltimore, John Z. and Akiko K. Bowers Distinguished Professor, Dean, University of Maryland School of Medicine. “Endowed professorships, including the new Peter Angelos Distinguished Professor, provide our excellent faculty members with critical resources needed to sustain and expand promising research, launch innovative clinical initiatives, and educate and train the physician-scientists of tomorrow.” Deen Reece highlighted that UMSOM is fortunate to have nearly 70 endowed chairs and professorships in various stages of completion.
Joining Dean Reece in presenting the John B. Davidge Medal was Rajabrata Sarkar, MD, PhD, the Barbara Baur Dunlap Professor in Surgery.
A Long Career in Biomedical Engineering
Dr. Wu began his career at the University of Miami, where he received his PhD in biomedical engineering in 1996. He was recruited Department of Surgery at UMSOM as an assistant professor from the University of Pittsburgh in 2003, when he founded the Artificial Organs Laboratory. Dr. Wu was promoted to full professor in July 2014.
Dr. Wu is currently engaged in the basic and applied research of cardiovascular and pulmonary disease and the fundamental technical problems associated with artificial and bio-hybrid organ development. Dr. Wu’s current research projects include the use of ventricular assist devices in heart failure, development of pediatric ventricular assist devices, development of artificial pumping lungs, computational design and modeling of biomedical devices, experimental study and computational modeling of blood damage, and stem cell-based cellular therapy for cardiovascular disease and pulmonary disease.
About the University of Maryland School of Medicine
Commemorating its 210th Anniversary, the University of Maryland School of Medicine was chartered in 1807 as the first public medical school in the United States. It continues today as one of the fastest growing, top-tier biomedical research enterprises in the world -- with 43 academic departments, centers, institutes, and programs; and a faculty of more than 3,000 physicians, scientists, and allied health professionals, including members of the National Academy of Medicine and the National Academy of Sciences, and a distinguished recipient of the Albert E. Lasker Award in Medical Research. With an operating budget of more than $1 billion, the School of Medicine works closely in partnership with the University of Maryland Medical Center and Medical System to provide research-intensive, academic and clinically-based care for more than 1.2 million patients each year. The School has over 2,500 students, residents, and fellows, and nearly $450 million in extramural funding, with most of its academic departments highly ranked among all medical schools in the nation in research funding. As one of the seven professional schools that make up the University of Maryland Baltimore campus, the School of Medicine has a total workforce of nearly 7,000 individuals. The combined School and Medical System (“University of Maryland Medicine”) has an annual budget of nearly $6 billion and an economic impact in excess of $15 billion on the state and local community. The School of Medicine faculty, which ranks as the 8th-highest public medical school in research productivity, is an innovator in translational medicine, with 600 active patents and 24 start-up companies. The School works locally, nationally, and globally, with research and treatment facilities in 36 countries around the world. Visit medschool.umaryland.edu/