By Sharon Sanders
At the American Society of Cytopathology (ASC) scientific meeting last month in Dallas, Dr. Marshall Austin ’71 was awarded the 2014 Papanicolaou Award, one of the highest honors in the field. But what really excited him was the accompanying opportunity to present a lecture about his hero, Dr. George Papanicolaou.
“Dr. Papanicolaou was the inventor of what came to be known as the Pap smear, medical history’s most successful cancer screening test,” says Austin of the Greek-born physician who died in 1962. “He was nominated five times for the Nobel Prize.”
Specializing in the study and treatment of cervical cancer, Austin is professor of pathology and director of cytopathology at Magee-Womens Hospital, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. “I’m the doctor’s doctor, if you will. I supply diagnostic interpretation on which treatment plans are based.”
Austin is unabashed in his gratitude to mentor and friend Bernie Fried, Kreider Professor Emeritus of Biology. “I owe many of my professional opportunities to my undergraduate work with Bernie, especially my admittance into Duke University’s medical scientist training program.” A biology graduate, Austin holds an M.D and Ph.D. from Duke.
“Early on, I realized I enjoy research and lab work. It’s just my personality to be digging into things—the basic science, the science behind the medicine.”
Austin is consistently cited in Pittsburgh Magazine’s annual “Best Doctors in Pittsburgh.” He is past president of ASC.