Manuel Martínez Maldonado

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Dr. Manuel Martínez Maldonado
Born 1937
Yauco, Puerto Rico
Nationality Puerto Rican
Occupation Nephrologist, educator, poet and author
Spouse(s) Nivia
Children Manny Jr., David, Ricky and Pablo
Dr. Martínez Maldonado also published five books of poetry and two novels

Dr. Manuel Martínez Maldonado[note 1] (born 1937), MD; MACP, an internist and nephrologist, administrator, educator, poet and author, has authored numerous scientific publications and edited several books. His research interests are the regulation of body fluids and the pathophysiology of blood pressure and its effects on the kidneys. He also focuses on the renin angiotensin system, a hormone system that helps regulate long-term blood pressure and blood volume in the body and which is controlled primarily by the kidneys. His clinical research has included polycycstic kidney disease, renal stones and hypercalcemia. Martinez-Maldonado has occupied numerous important jobs, including Vice President for Research at Oregon Health and Sciences University (1998-2000), President and Dean of the Ponce School of Medicine (2000–2006). He was the executive vice president for research at the University of Louisville from 2000–2009.[1]

Early years[edit]

Martínez Maldonado, born in the southern town of Yauco, Puerto Rico, was an only child. There he received his primary education. His secondary education took place in the Matienzo Cintron School in Santurce and the JJ Osuna School in Hato Rey. He attended the University High School and was the president of the graduating class in 1954. After graduating from high school, he entered the University of Puerto Rico where he studied chemistry and literature. In his sophomore year, Martínez Maldonado decided that he would like to study medicine instead of literature. He was accepted at Temple University School of Medicine (TUSM), in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania where he earned his Medical Degree. He completed his postdoctoral study on renal and electrolyte metabolism at the Southwestern Medical School of the University of Texas.[2]

Martínez Maldonado became interested in the field of renal physiology and, later on, in nephrology, and was accepted by the Dallas Southwestern Nephrology Division, where he became an investigator and carried out many of his initial experiments.[3] He became an independent investigator at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston where he rose from an assistant to a full professor of medicine with tenure (1968–1973). Nephrology is a branch of internal medicine and pediatrics dealing with the study of the function and diseases of the kidney.[4]

Scientific investigations[edit]

Martínez Maldonado perfected a technique that could measure the osmolality of samples (nanoliters) of proximal tubar fluids.[3] He and his colleagues at Baylor designed a clinical treatment for hypercalcemia that was in use until the beginning of this century when specific medicantions were developed for the condition.[3]

In 1973, Martínez Maldonado ended his professorship at Baylor University to become Associate Chief of Staff for Research at the San Juan Veterans Administration Center, and professor and Chair of the Department of Physiology, and Professor of Medicine at the University of Puerto Rico School of Medicine. Dring his time at Baylor College of Medicine he published 39 original investigations in various journals such as the Journal of Clinical Investigation, the New England Journal of Medicine and the American Journal of Physiology..[3] This scholarly activity continued in his Renal Metabolic Laboratory at the San Juan VA and the department of Physiology. He rescued the department of physiology by recruiting new faculty staff and sending students to train in important physiology departments in the United States and recruiting them back to the island. He is credited for the development of an outstanding training program for internal medicine at the San Juan VA and responsible for the identification of talent among his students. Many of those occupy important positions in academic medicine and clinical practice in Puerto Rico and the United States.

Written works[edit]

Martínez Maldonado, who is married with four children, published five books of poetry and two novels.[3][5]


  • "La voz sostenida" (1984)
  • "Palm Beach Blues" (1986)
  • "Por amor al arte" (1989)
  • "Hotel María" (1999)
  • "Novela de Mediodia (2003)


  • "Isla Verde" (El Chevy Azul)1999
  • "El Vuelo del Dragon" 2012


Martínez Maldonado was elected to the American Society of Clinical Investigations. He was a member of the Association of American Physicians, the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences, The American Academy of Arts and Science, and a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He was also a member of the American Board of Internal Medicine, Nephrology panel.[3]

In 1975, in addition to being Professor of Medicine and Physiology at the University of Puerto Rico he was appointed Chief of Medical Services at the San Juan Veterans Hospital. In 1991, he was awarded the Founders Medal of the Southern Society for Clinical Investigations.[3] In 1990 he was appointed Chief of the Medical Services at the Atlanta VA Center, Professor and Vice Chair of the Department of Medicine at Emory University. He moved to OHSU in Portland, Oregon where he was instrumental in the creation of the Vaccine and Gene Therapy Center of that institution. In 2000, Martínez Maldonado was named president and dean of the Ponce School of Medicine. He obtained full accreditation for the school and improved its finances and, in 2006, he was selected as the executive vice president for research at the University of Louisville.[6] where he saw through the building and completion, and the recruitment of the director of the Center for Predictive Medicine, one of thirteen level 3 biodefense laboratories in the United States.

See also[edit]


  1. ^
    This name uses Spanish naming customs: the first or paternal family name is Martínez and the second or maternal family name is Maldonado.