Dr. Mark Tarnopolsky has been appointed the McMaster Children's Hospital / Hamilton Health Sciences Foundation Chair in Neuromuscular Disorders effective July 1, 2009. An event to announce the new endowed chair sponsored by the Hamilton Health Sciences Foundation was held Jan. 20, 2010.
As a student at McMaster University, Dr. Tarnopolsky obtained his Bachelor of Physical Education (1985), his medical degree (1988) and a PhD (1991) focused on cell biology and metabolism. Following residency in neurology at the University of Rochester and at McMaster University in physical medicine and rehabilitation, Dr. Tarnopolsky rejoined the University as an assistant professor in medicine and kinesiology in 1996.
He is currently a professor in the Department of Pediatrics and Department of Medicine and an associate member of the Department of Kinesiology. He is also director of the Neuromuscular and Neurometabolic Centre of Hamilton Health Sciences.
Dr. Tarnopolsky's primary research is in mitochondrial disease and mitochondrial dysfunction in aging. His current focus is discovering and evaluating therapies that enhance muscle function in people with acquired and genetic neuromuscular disorders and mitochondrial dysfunction. He also has a particular interest in the potential for exercise, pharmacological and nutraceutical interventions to enhance muscle function and improve muscle mass.
Dr. Tarnopolsky has authored nearly 250 peer-reviewed publications in leading journals related to neuromuscular disorders, mitochondrial dysfunction, aging, metabolism, nutrition and physiology. His work has attracted several prestigious awards, including the Premier's Award of Excellence and the Dr. David Green Award as the top clinician-scientist in Canada by the Muscular Dystrophy Association. Dr. Tarnopolsky also has a clear focus on education, having taught eight different graduate courses and acted as the primary supervisor to nearly 30 MSc and PhD students.
Dr. Tarnopolsky is also known around McMaster as an endurance athlete. He has competed in winter triathlons, the Ski-Orienteering World Championships and is a three-times Ontario Trail Running Series Champion. He recently competed as part of a team in Blaze: Niagara Escarpment Race, an 894-kilometre race along Ontario's Bruce Trail.