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Michael S. Parmacek, MD

Michael S. Parmacek, MD Researcher

Chair, Department of Medicine Frank Wister Thomas Professor of Medicine

Dr. Parmacek is employed by Penn Medicine.

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About Dr. Michael S. Parmacek

Recognized by America's Top Doctors, 2007

Recognized by Philadelphia Magazine "Top Doctors" 2007 issue

Clinical Specialties

Board Certification:

  • Cardiovascular Disease, 1987
  • Internal Medicine, 1984

Insurance Accepted

  • Aetna US Healthcare
  • Amerihealth Caritas
  • Amerihealth Caritas Medicare
  • Cigna
  • Cigna HealthSpring
  • Clover Health Plan
  • CVS Health
  • Devon Health Services (Americare)
  • eLAP Services
  • Gateway Health Plan
  • Geisinger Health Plan
  • HealthAmerica / HealthAssurance, a Coventry Plan
  • HealthPartners
  • HealthPartners Medicare
  • HealthSmart
  • Highmark Blue Shield
  • Homestead Smart Health Plans
  • Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey
  • Humana / Choicecare
  • Independence Blue Cross (Keystone East)
  • Intergroup
  • Keystone First
  • Keystone First Medicare
  • Multiplan
  • NJ Medicaid
  • NJ Qualcare
  • Oxford Health Plan
  • PA Health and Wellness (Centene) Medicare
  • PA Medicaid
  • PA Medicare
  • Preferred Health Care/LGH
  • Provider Partners Health Plan
  • Rail Road Medicare / Palmetto GBA
  • Remedy Partners at Penn Medicine
  • Tricare
  • United Healthcare
  • UnitedHealthcare Community Plan
  • US Family Health Plan
  • Veterans Choice Program

Education and Training

Medical School: Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine
Residency: University of Michigan Medical Center
Fellowship: Northwestern Medical Center
Fellowship: Howard Hughes Medical Institute
Fellowship: University of Michigan Medical Center


AAIM Research Committee, National Alliance for Academic Internal Medicine (AAIM), National American College of Cardiology, National American College of Physicians, National American Federation of Clinical Research, National American Heart Association Basic Research Council, National American Heart Association, Council on Basic Cardiovascular Sciences, National American Heart Association, National American Heart Association, National American Society for Microbiology, National APM Williams Award Selection Committee, National Association of American Physicians (AAP), National Association of Professor of Medicine (APM), National Association of Professors of Cardiology, National Association of Professors of Medicine, National Association of Subspecialty Professors, National Association of University Cardiologists, National Cardiac Muscle Society, National Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Local Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, National International Society for Heart Research, National Interurban Clinical Society, National John Morgan Society, University of Pennsylvania, Local NIH NHLBI, Board of Scientific Councilors, National NIH NHLBI, National NIH NHLBI, National North American Vascular Biology Organization, National Pennsylvania Muscle Institute, University of Pennsylvania, Local Third Consensus Conference on the Physician Investigator Workforce, National

Hospital Affiliation

Dr. Parmacek is employed by Penn Medicine.

Hospital Privileges:

  • Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania: Has privileges to treat patients in the hospital.
  • Penn Presbyterian Medical Center: Has privileges to treat patients in the hospital.


Description of Research Expertise:

Chair, Department of Medicine
Director, Cardiovascular Institute

Research Interests
Transcriptional programs that regulate cardiovascular development

Key Words: smooth muscle cell, cardiac myocyte, GATA, myocardin, transcription, notch

Description of Research
The Parmacek laboratory examines the molecular and genetic programs that regulate heart and vascular development with particular focus on defining the molecular programs regulating development, differentiation and survival of vascular smooth muscle cells and cardiac myocytes. The Parmacek laboratory utilizes a variety of experimental methodologies including the generation and characterization of genetically-engineered mouse and embryonic stem (ES) cell models to elucidate the function(s) of critical transcription factors and transcriptional co-activators in the cardiovascular system. The Parmacek laboratory cloned and/or characterized the function of the GATA-4/5/6 subfamily of cardiovascular transcription factors and the Myocardin/MKL-1/MKL-2 family of transcriptional coactivators. These data provided unanticipated insights into how cells populating the cardiovascular system transduce signals regulating development and response to hemodynamic stress. While fundamentally important at a basic level, this research has provided insights into the pathogenesis of cardiovascular diseases including atherosclerosis, aortic aneurysm and dissection, heart failure and congenital heart disease.

Rotation Projects for 2012-13
1. Characterization of the function of MKL2/MRTF-B in the heart and vasculature
2. Examine the molecular basis of myocardin function in the heart and in visceral and vascular smooth muscle cells
3. Characterization of mice harboring a conditional mutation in the lineage-restricted transcription factors GATA-6
4. Examine the role of Notch signaling and Notch-regulated genes during angiogenesis and in the vasculature

Lab personnel:
Jian Li, MD - Senior Research Scientist
John Huang MD, PhD - Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Xiaohong Zhu - Senior Research Technician

Selected Publications:

Huang J, Elicker J, Bowens N, Liu X, Cheng L, Cappola TP, Zhu X, Parmacek MS: Myocardin regulates BMP10 expression and is required for heart development The Journal of Clinical Investigation 122 (10): 3678-91,2012.

Li J, Bowens N, Cheng L, Zhu X, Chen M, Hannenhalli S, Cappola TP, Parmacek MS: Myocardin-like protein 2 regulates TGFβ signaling in embryonic stem cells and the developing vasculature Development (Cambridge, England) 139 (19): 3531-42,2012.

Rong L, Liu J, Qi Y, Graham AM, Parmacek MS, Li S: GATA-6 promotes cell survival by up-regulating BMP-2 expression during embryonic stem cell differentiation Molecular Biology of the Cell 23 (18): 3754-63,2012.

Rader DJ, Parmacek MS: Secreted miRNAs suppress atherogenesis Nature Cell Biology 14 (3): 233-5,2012.

Shen D, Li J, Lepore JJ, Anderson TJ, Sinha S, Lin AY, Cheng L, Cohen ED, Roberts JD Jr, Dedhar S, Parmacek MS, Gerszten RE: Aortic aneurysm generation in mice with targeted deletion of integrin-linked kinase in vascular smooth muscle cells Circulation Research 109 (6): 616-28,2011.

Huang J, Lu MM, Cheng L, Li J, Zhu X, Stout A, Chen M, Li J, Parmacek MS: Myocardin is required for cardiomyocyte survival and maintenance of heart function Proc Natl Acad Sci USA (106): 18734-18739,2009.

Parmacek MS, Epstein JA: Cardiomyocyte Renewal N Engl J Med 2 (361): 86-8,2009.

Zhang Z, Goss AM, Cohen ED, Kadzik R, Lepore JJ, Muthukumaraswamy K, Yang J, DeMayo F, Whitsett JA, Parmacek MS, Morrisey EE: A Gata6-Wnt pathway required for epithelial stem cell development and airway regeneration Nature Genetics 40 (7): 862-70,2008.

Huang J, Cheng L, Li J, Chen M, Zhou D, Lu MM, Proweller A, Epstein JA, Parmacek MS: Myocardin regulates smooth muscle cell contractile genes required for closure of the ductus arteriosus J Clin Invest 118 (2): 515-25,2008.

Proweller A, Wright AC, Horng D, Cheng L, Lu MM, Lepore JJ, Pear WS, Parmacek MS: Notch signaling in vascular smooth muscle cells is required to pattern the cerebral vasculature Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 104 (41): 16275-80,2007.

View all publications

Academic Contact Info

6th Floor, South Pavilion
Perelman Center for Advanced Medicine

Philadelphia, PA 19104
Phone: (215) 662-2402

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