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USciences to Honor Medical Pioneer Martin Buchalter at 194th Founders’ Day on Feb. 19

By Brian Kirschner

buchaltersUniversity of the Sciences will present an honorary doctor of science degree (posthumously) to Martin Buchalter P’55, MS, founder of Parker Laboratories as part of the University’s 194th Founders’ Day on Feb. 19, 2015, at 2 p.m. The honor will be accepted on his behalf by his wife Carol Buchalter (pictured at right with Martin), chairman, board of directors, Parker Laboratories.

The annual anniversary celebration will also include special awards of merit presented to undergraduate and graduate students and to a faculty member who represent the innovative and entrepreneurial spirit of the University’s founders, and who have engaged in research or some form of scholarly pursuit that results in new developments or discoveries.

Martin Buchalter passed away at the age of 76 on Nov. 17, 2008, at his home in New York City but not before helping to revolutionize medical treatment practices. When Martin graduated from Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and Science in 1955, ultrasound therapy typically was applied to the patient as he or she was sitting in the bathtub. Just eight years after receiving his pharmacy degree, Martin revolutionized the medical application of ultrasound by developing an easy-to-use transmission gel that once applied to the patient’s skin, provided the medium that the ultrasound waves needed to enter body tissue. 

Today Martin’s ultrasound transmission gel, known as Aquasonic®100, is the flagship product of Parker Laboratories, a New Jersey company that he founded in 1958 and is still owned by the Buchalter family. Parker Laboratories remains the leading manufacturer of medical ultrasound and electromedical contact media, including gels, solid gels, lotions, and pads. 

Immediately, following the ceremony in the AstraZeneca Auditorium of the McNeil Science and Technology Center, guests are invited to stay for a reception and Founders’ Day birthday cake. 

Founders' Day at USciences recalls the University's establishment on Feb. 23, 1821. At that time, 68 prominent Philadelphia apothecaries met in Carpenter's Hall to establish the basis for the improved scientific standards we enjoy today and to train more competent apprentices and students. They pledged “to invite a spirit of pharmaceutical investigation" and to guard the public from "the introduction of spurious, adulterated, deteriorated, or otherwise mischievous articles." A year later, they organized and incorporated the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy (PCP)—the first college of pharmacy in North America—now a part of University of the Sciences. The group ushered in a new era of the practice of pharmacy—the identification, selection, compounding, and analysis of drugs—and laid the foundation for a legacy of future advances and discoveries.

Categories: News, Event, Awards and Honors, Alumni, USciecnes, Philadelphia College of Pharmacy