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Robert Marc, PHD, of the John A. Moran Eye Center Receives Distinguished Professor Rank

Robert Marc, PhD, professor of ophthalmology and director of research for the John A. Moran Eye Center was honored with the rank of distinguished professor at the University of Utah commencement ceremonies on Friday, May 4, 2012.

The rank of distinguished professor is reserved for selected individuals whose achievements exemplify the highest goals of scholarship and whose record includes evidence of a high dedication to teaching. In order to become a distinguished professor, an individual must receive not only recognition from national and international peers, but from students and colleagues.

"Besides being a world-class scientist whose research is universally admired for its unique and innovative approaches, Robert is also a superb teacher and role model to our faculty, post-doctoral fellows, graduate, medical and undergraduate students. We are all influenced by his infectious passion for science, his ingenuity and enthusiasm for the scientific process, as well as his high ethical standards," says Randall J Olson, M.D., professor and chair of the department of ophthalmology and visual sciences at the University of Utah and CEO of the Moran Eye Center.

Dr. Marc oversees the research program, which includes 16 laboratories at the Moran Eye Center and is largely responsible for attracting some of the best and brightest talent in the world of vision research. In addition to his administrative duties, he is currently running two RO1 grants, one of which has been continuously funded for more than 30 years, revealing a constant stream of insight into how the retina is constructed. The other grant has revealed the mechanisms of retinal degeneration to the vision community. Over the years, the work in his lab in retinal circuitry, retinal degeneration and metabolomics have revolutionized the understanding of vision science.

Since his arrival at the Moran Eye Center in 1993, Dr. Marc has been continuously funded through the National Institutes of Health, has taught and supported students and faculty and developed two complementary research programs that have, through collaborations, brought in additional grant funding to the University of Utah.

His originality, novelty and insights of his work are truly unique. The groundwork that Dr. Marc has established will serve as a springboard for science and progress for many decades to come.