Honors Distinguished Graduate Alumnus
Washington State University's Integrative Physiology and Neuroscience (IPN) joined the
university's 100 years of graduate education April 16, 2002 by
honoring its first Distinguished Graduate Alumnus, Dr. Mark Knudson.
Dr. Knudson received his B.S. (Biology) from Pacific Lutheran
University and went on to earn his Ph.D. (Physiology) from the WSU's
College of Veterinary Medicine in 1974. He was awarded a National
Institute of Health Individual Postdoctoral Fellowship at Washington
State University and was a post-doctoral fellow and faculty member
at the University of Washington School of Medicine from 1975 through
Dr. Knudson began his career in the medical device industry in 1979
Mark Knudson, Ph.D.
Cardiac Pacemakers, Inc. (CPI) where he held positions of increasing
responsibility culminating in Director of Applied Research. In 1983, he left
CPI to found Arden Medical Systems, a start-up company developing a
physician office diagnostic system. He served as President and Chief
Executive Officer of Arden Medical until its 1986 acquisition by Johnson and
Johnson, Inc. Following the acquisition, he was named President of Johnson
and Johnson Professional Diagnostics, Inc., a position he held until 1989.
Since 1989, he has been a partner of Medical Innovation Partners, a venture
capital firm whose mission has been to invest in new technologies that
reduce health care costs while improving patient outcomes.
Currently, Dr. Knudson is Chair and Chief Executive Officer of Venturi
Group, LLC, a venture capital-backed medical device incubator. He also
serves as President and CEO of Pi Medical, Inc (http://www.venturigroup.com/).
Founded by Venturi Group, Pi Medical develops products for the treatment of
sleep-disordered breathing. He also serves as Chair of HeartStent
Corporation. HeartStent was founded in 1996 to develop his invention for a
novel approach to the treatment of coronary artery disease involving direct
ventricles to coronary artery blood flow (VCAB). He serves on the Board of
Directors of Diametrics Medical, Inc (NASDAQ: DMED).
Knudson has been awarded over 40 US and foreign patents which have resulted
in the founding of several successful medical product companies. He has
published articles, been called to testify before Congress on medical
issues, spoken at numerous conferences and has been a professional advisor
to many companies and institutions.
Dr. Knudson’s research interests have primarily focused on the study of the
cardiovascular system and its response to stress. His thesis research
characterized the hemodynamic response to atrial arrhythmias, especially
atrial fibrillation. His post-doctoral work and his studies while at the
University of Washington were focused on elucidating the mechanisms involved
in calcium ion metabolism in the heart. The models studied included
exhaustive exercise in human skeletal and rat cardiac muscle and a hamster
genetically pre-disposed to the development of cardio-myopathy.
Dr. Knudson’s research in industry has continued with studies evaluating the
effect of exercise at fixed heart rates, biosensors for use in biological
fluids, minimally invasive methods for the measurement of blood glucose, a
novel approach to coronary artery bypass in humans utilizing an implant to
direct blood directly from the left ventricle of the heart to a blocked
coronary artery and methods for stabilization of the human airway to treat
sleep disordered breathing. This research has resulted in numerous patents
on which Dr. Knudson is a named inventor as well as several publications in
the scientific and medical literature.
Call for Nominations for Distinguished Alumnus
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