BALTIMORE--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Institute of Human Virology (IHV) at the University of Maryland School of Medicine today commenced IHV’s 19th Annual International Meeting, which will be held through Thursday, October, 26 at the Four Seasons Hotel in Baltimore, Maryland. IHV’s Annual International Meeting attracts hundreds of elite scientists who descend upon Baltimore to share ideas and inspire medical virus research collaborations.
“Our meeting is designed to highlight cutting-edge science and provide a rare platform for provocative discussion,” said Robert C. Gallo, MD, The Homer & Martha Gudelsky Distinguished Professor in Medicine, Director, Institute of Human Virology, University of Maryland School of Medicine, who is most widely known for his co-discovery of HIV as the cause of AIDS and, along with his coworkers, for the development of the HIV blood test. “This year’s meeting has more emphasis on cancer from the aspects of infectious agents to advances in cancer therapies, and there will be a special symposium on advances in viral diagnostics to analyze recent progress made in the field.”
The meeting program’s organization was led by Man Charurat, PhD, Professor of Medicine, Director of the Division of Epidemiology and Prevention, Institute of Human Virology, University of Maryland School of Medicine. In addition to emerging concepts in cancer therapy, cancer and stem cells, infectious agents and cancer, and viral diagnostics, the meeting will include intense discussions on HIV “cure” research, preventative and therapeutic vaccines, immunology and viral pathogenesis, public health science and responses on a global and local level, and clinical virology.
Global health representatives from around the world including, among others, Isaac Adewole, FAS, The Honorable Minister of Health from Nigeria, Anthony Fauci, MD, Director, U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), and, John Martin, PhD, Executive Chairman, Gilead Sciences, will focus on translating laboratory discoveries into public health practice.
During a gala held Wednesday, October 25, the 2017 IHV Lifetime Achievement Awardees, who are nominated and voted upon by IHV faculty, will be honored.
The 2017 IHV Lifetime Achievement for Scientific Contributions will be awarded to Peter Palese, PhD, Professor & Chair of Microbiology, Professor of Medicine, Infectious Diseases, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, Director, Center of Excellence, Global Virus Network (GVN), Member, IHV Board of Advisors.
“When I think of the greatest virologists in the world who are making the most important contributions to translational medical research while concomitantly being on the top of fundamental research on viruses, Dr. Palese is always in the top few, if not the top of that list,” said Dr. Gallo. “It is an honor for me to honor him for his fundamental studies in the biology of human viruses that cause serious disease and epidemics, most notably the influenza virus.”
The 2017 IHV Lifetime Achievement Award for Public Service will be awarded to Quarraisha Abdool Karim, PhD, Associate Scientific Director, Centre for the AIDS Programme of Research in South Africa (CAPRISA), Adjunct Professor in Public Health, Nelson R Mandela School of Medicine, University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa and Salim Abdool Karim, MBChB, PhD, DSc, Director & Professor for Global Health Department of Epidemiology, Centre for the AIDS Programme of Research in South Africa (CAPRISA), Pro Vice-Chancellor (Research), University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa.
“To me, both of these renowned individuals have made some of the greatest contributions in the history of HIV/AIDS in public health and epidemiology relevant to prevention and care of infected people,” said Dr. Gallo. “I don’t know any person or persons who have done more to advance the proper care of people with HIV infection or the prevention of HIV infection among a population.”
In 1996, Dr. Gallo co-founded the IHV with colleagues Robert Redfield, MD, The Robert C. Gallo, MD Endowed Professorship in Translational Medicine, Associate Director, Director of the Division of Clinical Care and Research, Institute of Human Virology, University of Maryland School of Medicine and William Blattner, MD, who is retired since January 2016 and a Member of the IHV Board of Advisors.
Since its founding, the Baltimore-based Institute faculty and staff have grown from 50 to more than 300, and the Institute's patient base has grown from just 200 patients to currently nearly 20,000 in Baltimore and Washington, DC, and more than 1,000,000 in 10 African and 2 Caribbean nations since 2004. IHV is also internationally renowned for its basic science research, which includes the search for a functional HIV “cure” and a promising preventive HIV vaccine funded largely by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and, in part, by others including NIAID.
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