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Pediatrics names vice chair of clinical affairs, strategic planning

Gastroenterologist Mark Lowe to help expand outpatient programs

by Kristina SauerweinApril 5, 2017

Robert Boston

Mark E. Lowe, MD, PhD, a noted physician with expertise in pediatric gastroenterology, has been named vice chair of clinical affairs and strategic planning of the Department of Pediatrics at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. He began his new position April 1.

Lowe returns to Washington University, where for nearly two decades he distinguished himself as a successful physician and researcher.

He comes from the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, where he was a vice chair, an interim chair and a professor of pediatrics, as well as a professor of microbiology and molecular genetics, and director of the Division of Pediatric Gastroenterology. He also held the Carol Ann Craumer Endowed Chair for Pediatric Research at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC.

At Washington University, his alma mater, Lowe’s newly created faculty position will be focused on expanding pediatric outpatient programs to satellite facilities throughout the region, restructuring ambulatory clinics, and improving access to and facilitating better communication among pediatricians. He also has been named a professor of pediatrics.

“The most important reason to expand the pediatric outpatient program is to make our excellent physicians more accessible to children in the region,” said Lowe, who will treat patients at St. Louis Children’s Hospital. “Currently, families travel to the main hospital or to the Specialty Care Center in Town and Country. For some families, travel to either location is difficult and a possible obstacle to the care their children require. The strategic location of new satellite facilities will allow more children to receive efficient, patient-centered and high-quality care from the outstanding specialists at St. Louis Children’s Hospital.”

Lowe will continue his research, which is funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), on childhood gastroenterological disorders. His studies have delved into poor growth in infants; chronic pancreatitis; and rare gastroenterological diseases in children. He is a leading international expert on the pancreatic enzyme lipase and its molecular role in dietary fat absorption.

“Dr. Mark Lowe is a remarkable physician, scientist, mentor and educator who has rightfully earned a worldwide reputation in pediatric gastroenterology,” said Gary A. Silverman, MD, PhD, the Harriet B. Spoehrer Professor and head of the Department of Pediatrics at the School of Medicine. “Based on Dr. Lowe’s prior experience here and his community-based specialty skill set, he was the perfect fit for this new position designed to specifically meet the needs of our ambulatory program and community outreach mission.”

Lowe began his academic career at Washington University, earning a bachelor’s degree in biology in 1973. He earned his doctorate in biochemistry in 1977 from the University of Pennsylvania before accepting a five-year position at the NIH. He earned his medical degree from the University of Miami in 1984.

Lowe completed his fellowship and residency at St. Louis Children’s Hospital and then joined the faculty at Washington University. He remained at the School of Medicine until 2003, when he went to the University of Pittsburgh.

“I am excited to land at Washington University and St. Louis Children’s Hospital to help improve the health of children in our region,” Lowe said.

Washington University School of Medicine‘s 2,100 employed and volunteer faculty physicians also are the medical staff of Barnes-Jewish and St. Louis Children’s hospitals. The School of Medicine is one of the leading medical research, teaching and patient-care institutions in the nation, currently ranked seventh in the nation by U.S. News & World Report. Through its affiliations with Barnes-Jewish and St. Louis Children’s hospitals, the School of Medicine is linked to BJC HealthCare.

Kristina covers pediatrics, surgery, medical education and student life. In 2020, she received a gold Robert G. Fenley Writing Award for general staff writing from the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC), and in 2019, she received the silver award. Kristina is an author and former reporter for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch and the Los Angeles Times, where she was part of a team of journalists that won the Pulitzer Prize in 2004 for breaking news. Additionally, she covered the 2014 Ferguson unrest for TIME magazine and, for eight years, wrote a popular parenting column for