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Global Health and Infectious Disease
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About the Speakers
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About Research Days




About the Speakers

John Coffin, PhD: American Cancer Society Research Professor, Department of Molecular Biology and Microbiology, Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences, Tufts University. His research seeks to obtain a better understanding of the interaction of retroviruses with their host cells and organisms.

Lisa Davidson, MD: Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine, Tufts University School of Medicine. Her research focuses on several areas of probiotics including the ability of probiotics to affect colonization with resistant bacteria, the use of probiotics as immune adjuvants to mucosal vaccines, and exploring the potential effect of probiotics on the microbiota of the GI and respiratory tract.  Her clinical work focuses on complicated skin and soft tissue infections, wound healing, and antimicrobial stewardship.

Jeffrey Griffiths, AB, MD, MPH&TM: Associate Professor, Department of Public Health and Community Medicine, Tufts University School of Medicine. His research focuses on the human, animal, and environmental epidemiology of the emerging pathogen Cryptosporidium; development of an ultrastable unrefrigerated measles vaccine for use where there is no refrigeration; and the influence of malnutrition and environmental factors on common infectious diseases such as diarrhea and pneumonia. He has worked since 2001 to link universities in East Africa and Tufts for common education and research, as well as in Ecuador since 1991.

Patricia Hibberd, MD, PhD: Director, Center for Global Health Research; Professor, Departments of Medicine, of Pediatrics and of Public Health and Community Medicine, Tufts University School of Medicine. Her research focuses on Global Health – prevention and treatment of childhood pneumonia and diarrhea; mechanism of action of probiotics and their effects on prevention and treatment of infections; as well as innovative Phase I/II/III clinical/translational studies to prevent and treat infections. Dr. Hibberd is a 2009 Paul G. Rogers Society for Global Health Research Ambassador.

Ralph R. Isberg, PhD: Investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute; Professor, Department of Molecular Biology and Microbiology, Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences, Tufts University. His research focuses on mechanisms of pathogenesis by bacteria.

Shafiqul Islam, ScD: Professor, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Tufts University School of Engineering; Professor, Water and Diplomacy, The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy; Bernard M. Gordon Senior Faculty Fellow in Engineering.  His research focuses on water and diplomacy, remote sensing, scale issues, and climate change.

Gerald T. Keusch, MD: Associate Director, National Emerging Infectious Diseases Laboratory; Special Assistant to the President for Global Health, Boston University. His research focus ranges from molecular pathogenesis of tropical infectious diseases to field research in nutrition, immunology, host susceptibility, and the treatment of tropical infectious diseases including HIV/AIDS.

Stuart Levy, MD: Professor, Department of Medicine, Tufts University School of Medicine; Professor, Department of Molecular Biology and Microbiology, Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences, Tufts University; President, Alliance for Prudent Use of Antibiotics. His research focuses on the genetic and molecular basis of antibiotic resistance and the epidemiology of drug resistant bacteria.

Joann Lindenmayer, MPH, DVM: Associate Professor, Department of Environmental and Population Health, Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University. Her research includes topics in public health surveillance, animal sentinels for infectious diseases and environmental contaminants, and the integration of veterinarians into the public health system.

Simin Nikbin Meydani, DVM, PhD: Director, Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging (HNRCA) at Tufts University; Senior Scientist and Director, Nutritional Immunology Laboratory, HNRCA; Professor, Department of Nutrition, Gerald J. and Dorothy R. Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, Tufts University. Her research focuses on the way nutrition influences the immune response.

H. Cody Meissner, MD: Professor, Department of Pediatrics; Chief, Division of Pediatric Infectious Diseases, Floating Hospital for Children, Tufts Medical Center. His clinical and research interests are: Etiology, pathogenesis and treatment of Kawasaki syndrome; prevention and treatment of viral respiratory tract infections; diagnosis and treatment of cogenital infections.

Fiorenzo G. Omenetto, PhD: Professor, Department of Biomedical Engineering, Tufts University School of Engineering. He leads the laboratory for Ultrafast Nonlinear Optics and Biophotonics at Tufts University and also holds an appointment in the Department of Physics. Formerly a J. Robert Oppenheimer Fellow at Los Alamos National Laboratory before joining Tufts, his research is focused on interdisciplinary themes that span nonlinear optics, nanostructured materials (such as photonic crystals and photonic crystal fibers), optofluidics and biopolymer based photonics. Since moving to Tufts at the end of 2005, he has proposed and pioneered (with David Kaplan) the use of silk as a material platform for photonics, optoelectronics and high-technology applications and is actively investigating novel applications that rely on this new technology base.  

Bruce Panilaitis, PhD: Research Assistant Professor, Department of Biomedical Engineering, Tufts University School of Engineering. His research focuses on the interface between the mammalian immune system and biomaterials.

David R. Snydman, MD:  Professor, Department of Medicine, Tufts University School of Medicine; Chief, Division of Geographic Medicine and Infectious Diseases; Hospital Epidemiologist, Tufts Medical Center. His research focuses on clinical studies of transplantation related immunocompromised hosts.

Patrick Skelly, PhD: Associate Professor, Department of Biomedical Sciences, Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University. His research focuses on parasitology and molecular and cellular helminthology with special emphasis on schistosomes.

Abraham L. Sonenshein, PhD: Professor, Department of Molecular Biology and Microbiology, Tufts University School of Medicine, and Program in Molecular Microbiology, Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences, Tufts University. His research focuses on the regulation of gene transcription and virulence in spore-forming and other Gram-positive bacteria.

Cheleste Thorpe, MD: Associate Professor, Department of Medicine, Tufts University School of Medicine; Division of Geographic Medicine and Infectious Disease, Tufts Medical Center. Her laboratory studies the role of Shiga toxin in the pathogenesis of diseases associated with Shiga toxin-producing E. coli infection, such as hemorrhagic colitis and HUS. She is also involved in collaborative studies on developing therapeutics for Shiga toxin-associated diseases, and in understanding the effects of the novel STEC-derived cytotoxin SubAB on host cells. She is also interested in the role of intestinal microbiota on immune activation in disease states where intestinal integrity is compromised.

Saul Tzipori, DVM, PhD, DSc, FRCVS: Distinguished Professor of Microbiology/Infectious Diseases; Director, Division of Infectious Diseases; Agnes Varis University Chair in Science and Society, Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University. His research focuses on enteric infections and the host response; including viral, bacterial and protozoan pathogens of veterinary and medical importance causing acute or chronic diarrhea in the immunocompetent or the immunodeficient host.

Christine Wanke, MD: Professor, Gerald J. and Dorothy R. Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University; Director, Division of Nutrition and Infection Unit; Associate Chair and Professor, Department of Public Health and Community Medicine; Professor, Department of Medicine, Tufts University School of Medicine. Her research focuses on the nutritional and metabolic issues in HIV, including weight loss, wasting, lipid metabolism, cardiovascular risk, glucose intolerance, and body shape abnormalities (fat atrophy and fat deposition); diarrheal disease and intestinal function in HIV infection.

Honorine Ward, MBBS (MD): Professor, Departments of Medicine and of Public Health and Community Medicine, Tufts University School of Medicine; Professor, Immunology and Molecular Microbiology Graduate Programs, Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences, Tufts University; Professor, Department of Biomedical Sciences, Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University; Professor, Department of Gastrointestinal Sciences, Christian Medical College, Vellore, India.  Her research focuses on the molecular basis of host-parasite interactions and the molecular epidemiology of cryptosporidiosis, and human immune responses to cryptosporidiosis in developing countries.

Joel Weinstock, MD: Professor, Department of Immunology, Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences, Tufts University; Chief, Division of Gastroenterology/Hepatology, Tufts Medical Center. His research focuses on inflammatory bowel disease and mechanisms of inflammation.

John Wong, MD: Professor, Department of Medicine, Tufts University School of Medicine; Chief, Division of Clinical Decision Making and Informatics, Tufts Medical Center. His research focuses on clinical decision analysis, technology assessment, medical informatics and telemedicine.

Henry H. Wortis, MD: Director, Study Center on the Immunogenetics of Infectious Disease; Professor, Department of Pathology, Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences, Tufts University.  He uses a genetic approach to discover molecules that are needed to prevent immune senescence.  He employs a mouse model of infection by the protozoan parasite Babesia microti.




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