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Justin Zivin

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Justin Zivin Obituary
Zivin, Justin Allen August 17, 1946 February 17, 2018 Justin Zivin, MD, PhD, a native Chicagoan, died suddenly on February 17, 2018 at his home in Rancho Santa Fe, California. He was 71 years old. Dr. Zivin graduated from Boone Elementary School and Mather High School. He attended the University of Wisconsin-Madison for three years, and was one of seven chosen for the inaugural Medical Scientist Training Program at Northwestern University. He received a BS (1967), MS (1970), PhD (1971), and MD (1972) from Northwestern. After completing his internal medicine internship at the University of Michigan Medical School in 1973, he spent two years at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, Maryland conducting intensive research, followed by a neurology residency at the University of California San Francisco. In 1978, he joined the faculty of the University of Massachusetts Medical School (UMass), Department of Neurology, chaired by his Northwestern Medical School mentor, Dr. David Drachman, who remained a lifelong friend. At UMass, he conducted his breakthrough research, leading to a publication in Science in 1985. That same year, he joined the University of California San Diego (UCSD) School of Medicine, Department of Neurosciences. During his 27-year tenure at UCSD, he trained numerous fellows, many of whom are in the forefront of today's neuroscience research. Dr. Zivin dedicated his life and career to identifying treatments for stroke, notably the use of tissue plasminogen activator (tPA). He worked tirelessly to advocate for the worldwide use of tPA to treat ischemic stroke, when appropriate. He traveled widely throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia to teach and lecture on stroke treatment. Wherever he went, people told him stories of how tPA helped their relatives or friends. He said those stories, "never got old." Dr. Zivin was widely respected for his rigor in conducting research, and for 25 years he served on numerous NIH grant review panels. He also served on key panels for the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for 10 years, and for the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). Dr. Zivin maintained a love of classical music throughout his life. A voracious reader, he had a steadfast interest in science, history, and politics. After his retirement, he joined a bridge group, and enjoyed local tournament play. In recent years, he took great joy in watching his grandchildren swim in the backyard pool. He and his beloved wife, Reni-Zoe were planning to celebrate their 50th anniversary in June. He cherished family, including his daughters Kara Zivin (Ryan McCammon) and Leslie Kandel (Ari), and his four grandchildren, Lewis and Reed McCammon, and Aylah and Aitan Kandel, and his dog Thor. He is also survived by his sister Linda Zivin, his niece Shauna (Cody) Oakwood, and his nephew Evan Zivin. He was preceded in death by his parents Dr. Simon Zivin and Mabel Zivin, his brother Martin Zivin, and his sister Nadine Zivin.
Published in Chicago Sun-Times on Apr. 8, 2018
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