The Merck Company Foundation, The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia and the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine Announce the Creation of The Maurice R. Hilleman Chair in Vaccinology

WHITEHOUSE STATION, N.J. & PHILADELPHIA--()--March 22, 2005--

  Dr. Hilleman, Director of the Merck Institute for Vaccinology, Pioneered Development of Vaccines for Many Diseases, Including Measles, Mumps and Rubella  



The University of Pennsylvania (Penn) School of Medicine's Department of Pediatrics and The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP), in collaboration with The Merck Company Foundation, today announced the creation of The Maurice R. Hilleman Chair in Vaccinology.

The Hilleman Chair will be awarded to a physician/scientist making significant contributions to vaccinology on the standing faculty of Penn. The Hilleman Chair holder will be selected by an interdisciplinary search committee appointed by the President and Chief Executive Officer of The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia and the Dean, School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania.

"Dr. Maurice Hilleman is one of the true scientific leaders of our time. His work has helped to protect millions from diseases ranging from pandemic flu to chicken pox, and has revolutionized public health, without question," said Adel A.F. Mahmoud, M.D., Ph.D., president, Merck Vaccines. "It is only fitting that a chair be established at CHOP and the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, two institutions that continue to make such progress in improving pediatric health care."

Maurice R. Hilleman, Ph.D., D.Sc., who retired from Merck in 1984 as senior vice president, pioneered the development of numerous vaccines for diseases including measles, mumps, rubella, varicella, Marek's Disease, hepatitis A, hepatitis B, adenoviruses and the evolution of vaccines against meningitis and pneumonia. He has been credited with developing more vaccines than any person and is recognized for having changed the face of the world in providing the means to prevent and control a number of its most important diseases.

"CHOP and Dr. Hilleman have long been partners in the development of vaccines for children," said Steven M. Altschuler, M.D., president and CEO, The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. "We are honored to continue this tradition by supporting an endowed Chair in Dr. Hilleman's name."

"Dr. Hilleman's contributions to society through his vaccine research have saved and continue to save millions of lives throughout the world," said Arthur H. Rubenstein, MBBCh, dean of Penn's School of Medicine and executive vice president of the University of Pennsylvania for the Health System. "We are confident that the Hilleman Chair will bring greater visibility to the field of vaccinology, attracting scientists and encouraging increased support of this important research."

The Hilleman Chair will accelerate the pace of vaccine research at the University of Pennsylvania. The Merck Company Foundation will provide a $1.5 million endowment, which will be held jointly by University of Pennsylvania and CHOP. CHOP will contribute $500,000 in matching funds, bringing the total endowment to $2 million.

About Dr. Hilleman

Dr. Hilleman is director, Merck Institute for Vaccinology and Adjunct Professor of Pediatrics, School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia. From 1948 to 1958, he was chief, Department of Respiratory Diseases, Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, Washington, DC. In 1951, he was a visiting investigator at the Hospital of the Rockefeller Institute for Medical Research. He has published over 500 original articles in the fields of virology, immunology, epidemiology and infectious diseases. He serves on numerous national and international advisory boards and committees, academic, governmental and private. These include the National Institutes of Health's Office of AIDS Research Program Evaluation and the National Vaccine Advisory Committee of the National Vaccine Program. He has been a member of the Expert Advisory Panel of the World Health Organization, Geneva, since 1952.

Dr. Hilleman is an elected member of the U.S. National Academy of Science; the Institute of Medicine; the American Academy of Arts and Sciences; and the American Philosophical Society. Dr. Hilleman has received the National Medal of Science from President Ronald Reagan and the Prince Mahidol Award from the King of Thailand for the advancement of public health. He has also received a special lifetime achievement award from the World Health Organization, the Lasker Medical Research Award and the Sabin Gold Medal and Lifetime Achievement Awards.

About Penn's School of Medicine

PENN Medicine is a $2.7 billion enterprise dedicated to the related missions of medical education, biomedical research and high-quality patient care. PENN Medicine consists of the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine (founded in 1765 as the nation's first medical school) and the University of Pennsylvania Health System.

Penn's School of Medicine is ranked #3 in the nation for receipt of NIH research funds; and ranked #4 in the nation in U.S. News & World Report's most recent ranking of top research-oriented medical schools. Supporting 1,400 fulltime faculty and 700 students, the School of Medicine is recognized worldwide for its superior education and training of the next generation of physician-scientists and leaders of academic medicine.

The University of Pennsylvania Health System includes three owned hospitals (Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, which is consistently ranked one of the nation's few "Honor Roll" hospitals by U.S. News & World Report; Pennsylvania Hospital, the nation's first hospital; and Presbyterian Medical Center); a faculty practice plan; a primary-care provider network; two multispecialty satellite facilities; and home care and hospice.

About The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia

The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia was founded in 1855 as the nation's first pediatric hospital. Through its long-standing commitment to providing exceptional patient care, training new generations of pediatric healthcare professionals and pioneering major research initiatives, Children's Hospital has fostered many discoveries that have benefited children worldwide. Its pediatric research program is among the largest in the country, ranking second in National Institutes of Health funding. In addition, its unique family-centered care and public service programs have brought the 430-bed hospital recognition as a leading advocate for children and adolescents. For more information, visit www.chop.edu.

About The Merck Company Foundation

The Merck Company Foundation is a U.S.-based, private charitable foundation. Established in 1957 by Merck & Co., Inc., a global research-driven pharmaceutical company, the Foundation is funded entirely by the Company and is Merck's chief source of funding support to qualified non-profit, charitable organizations. The mission of the Foundation is to support organizations and innovative programs that: expand access to medicines, vaccines and quality healthcare; build capacity in the biomedical and health sciences; promote environments that encourage innovation, economic growth and development in a fair and ethical context; and support communities where Merck has a major presence. Since its inception, The Merck Company Foundation has contributed more than $382 million to support important initiatives that address societal needs and are consistent with Merck's overall mission to enhance the health and well-being of people around the world.

About Merck

Merck & Co., Inc. is a global research-driven pharmaceutical company dedicated to putting patients first. Established in 1891, Merck discovers, develops, manufactures and markets vaccines and medicines in more than 20 therapeutic categories. The company also devotes extensive efforts to increase access to medicines through far-reaching programs that not only donate Merck medicines but help deliver them to the people who need them. Merck also publishes unbiased health information as a not-for-profit service. For more information, visit www.merck.com.

Contacts

The Merck Company Foundation
Media:
Janet Skidmore, 908-423-3046
or
Investors:
Graeme Bell, 908-423-5185

Contacts

The Merck Company Foundation
Media:
Janet Skidmore, 908-423-3046
or
Investors:
Graeme Bell, 908-423-5185