University of Minnesota

Gardner McMillan, MD, PhD

1919 — 2004

Born in Canada, Garner McMillan was educated at McGill University where he remained as a researcher in atherosclerosis with the pioneer pathologist George Lyman Duff. He early demonstrated that some lipoprotein particles were more atherogenic than others. He succeeded Duff as chairman of Pathology at McGill, continued experimental pathological studies of fatty acids, and stimulated research on the dynamic nature of the early atherosclerotic lesion. With Henry McGill and colleagues he developed standard methods for grading atherosclerosis which stimulated sound epidemiological studies.

McMillan came to NIH in 1966 where he served as special assistant to the director, then as Chief of the Atherosclerotic Diseases Branch at NHLBI, and then, until his 1991 retirement, as Director of the Arteriosclerosis, Hypertension, and Lipid Metabolism Program. He was central to the development of Specialized Centers of Research (SCORS) and their interdisciplinary strategies as well as the national primate colonies, and was instrumental in initiating the Pathological Determinants of Atherosclerosis in Youth Study (PDAY) that continues on the frontier of atherosclerosis research.

McMillan was most admired for his thoughtful, gentle criticism, innovation in research, and mentoring, in a tireless career concerned for the elevation of cardiovascular science. (HB)


Henry Blackburn

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