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Institute of Human Virology Hosts 21st Annual International Meeting of Top Scientists on Ending the HIV/AIDS Epidemic in America and the Intersection of Opioid Use Disorder

October 04, 2019 | Nora Samaranayake

The Honorable Parris Glendening, The Honorable Kathleen Kennedy Townsend to Receive Lifetime Achievement Awards for Public Service and Warner Greene to Receive Lifetime Achievement Award for Scientific Contributions

The Institute of Human Virology (IHV) at the University of Maryland School of Medicine commenced IHV2019 held Thursday, October 3 through Friday, October 4 at the Four Seasons Hotel in Baltimore, Maryland.  This year “Progress in HIV/AIDS: Challenges in 2020” opened with highlights about the recent plan for "Ending the HIV Epidemic by 2030” with expert opinions by ADM Brett Giroir, MD, Assistant Secretary for Health at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Anthony Fauci, MD, Director at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) and Nora Volkow, MD, Director, National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA), among other notable speakers.

The Meeting focuses on two critical issues, including leveraging scientific advances in the field of HIV to end the epidemic in America and integrating resources to address the ongoing opioid epidemic and prevent its impact on the lives of HIV-infected patients. The Annual International Meeting attracts hundreds of elite scientists who descend upon Baltimore to share ideas and inspire medical virus research collaborations.

Robert C. Gallo, MD“We have known for some time that it is, at least in theory, possible to end the HIV/AIDS epidemic, and I am pleased we are focusing on these efforts in addition to uniquely focusing on the intersection of infectious disease and opioid use disorder,” said Robert C. Gallo, MD,  the Homer & Martha Gudelsky Distinguished Professor in Medicine, Co-founder and Director of the Institute of Human Virology at the University of Maryland School of Medicine and Co-founder and International Scientific Advisor of the Global Virus Network (GVN).

“We are grateful to our nation’s leaders for advancing efforts to end the epidemic. Further, clinicians are uniquely positioned to advance addiction research as many infectious disease patients coming into the clinic are also afflicted with opioid use disorder.”

During a gala held this evening, the 2019 IHV Lifetime Achievement Awardees, who are nominated and voted upon by IHV faculty, will be honored.

The 2019 IHV Lifetime Achievement Award for Scientific Contributions will be presented to Warner Greene, MD, PhD, Director, Gladstone Center for HIV Cure Research, Nick and Sue Hellmann Distinguished Professor of Translational Medicine, Founding and Emeritus Director, Gladstone Institute of Virology and Immunology (GIVI). Dr. Greene was a leader in the new field of the molecular biology of all human retroviruses, beginning with HTLV-1, the first discovered human retrovirus back in 1980, by Dr. Gallo and his colleagues, as well as HIV by the mid 1980’s.

Warner Greene, MD, PhDDr. Greene’s research focused on many aspects of the understanding of the biology of the virus, including its molecular biology, its genes and their products – how it replicated, how it induced, and other aspects of resistance to infection and the pathogenic mechanisms of how HIV causes disease. In recent years, he has turned his attention towards finding new ways to advance science so that a patient could live a normal life without any drug therapy whatsoever.  Warner has also expanded his work to include global health activities in sub-Saharan Africa, and he has mentored more than 130 students and fellows during his career.

“Warner Greene is a national treasure in the molecular biology of very important viruses and genes,” said Dr. Gallo.

Two deserving individuals will receive the 2019 IHV Lifetime Achievement Award for Public Service.

The first will be presented to The Honorable Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, Director of Retirement Security, Economic Policy Institute, Lt. Governor of Maryland (1995-2003). As Maryland’s first woman Lt Governor, along with Gov. Parris Glendening, she recruited Dr. Gallo and his colleagues to the State.

The Honorable Kathleen Kennedy TownsendThe Institute has great respect for the Lt. Governor for helping people in need and advancing human health in multiple areas, where she has worked very hard and lent her time.  She became one of IHV’s early board chairs, is a current IHV Board member and has been a tremendous force in paving the way for the Institute’s success here in Maryland.  The Lt. Governor previously served as Deputy Assistant Attorney General of the United States, led the fight to make Maryland the first—and only—state to make service a high school graduation requirement, and has served in numerous other public service roles.

The second will be presented to The Honorable Parris Glendening, President, Smart Growth America’s Leadership Institute, President, Governors’ Institute on Community Design, Governor of Maryland (1995-2003).  Among other important benefits from Governor Glendening, who led the recruitment of Dr. Gallo and his colleagues, Robert Redfield, MD and William Blattner, MD, to form the Institute, it was the Governor’s personal commitment to their mission, having shared publicly about the death of his brother from AIDS, which brought them closer.

The Honorable Parris GlendeningIn addition, the Governor has a long history of public service, including his current national and international advocacy on smart growth, sustainability, global climate change, land conservation, transit-oriented development and equity. He was previously elected in local positions in the State and served as a professor at the University of Maryland, College Park for 27 years.

“For both the Governor and Lt. Governor, we not only honor them with this Lifetime Achievement Award in Public Service because of their vital roles in the formation of the Institute, which never would have happened without them, but also as a public ‘thank you,’ for their local, national and international service and leadership,” said Dr. Gallo.

Since IHV’s 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 more than 5,000 in Baltimore and Washington, DC, and more than 2 million in African and Caribbean nations since 2004.  IHV is also internationally renowned for its basic science research, which includes a promising preventive HIV vaccine funded largely by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and, in part, by others including National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

For more information, visit www.ihv.org.

About the Institute of Human Virology

Formed in 1996 as a partnership between the State of Maryland, the City of Baltimore, the University System of Maryland and the University of Maryland Medical System, IHV is an institute of the University of Maryland School of Medicine and is home to some of the most globally-recognized and world-renowned experts in all of virology. The IHV combines the disciplines of basic research, epidemiology and clinical research in a concerted effort to speed the discovery of diagnostics and therapeutics for a wide variety of chronic and deadly viral and immune disorders - most notably, HIV the virus that causes AIDS. For more information, www.ihv.org and follow us on Twitter @IHVmaryland.

About the University of Maryland School of Medicine

Now in its third century, the University of Maryland School of Medicine was chartered in 1807 as the first public medical school in the United States. It continues today as one of the fastest growing, top-tier biomedical research enterprises in the world, with 43 academic departments, centers, institutes, and programs. The School of Medicine has a faculty of more than 3,000 physicians, scientists, and allied health professionals, including members of the National Academy of Medicine and the National Academy of Sciences, and a distinguished recipient of the Albert E. Lasker Award in Medical Research. With an operating budget of more than $1.2 billion, the School of Medicine works closely in partnership with the University of Maryland Medical Center and Medical System to provide research-intensive, academic and clinically based care for more than 1.2 million patients each year. The School has over 2,500 students, residents, and fellows, and more than $540 million in extramural funding, with most of its academic departments highly ranked among all medical schools in the nation in research funding. As one of the seven professional schools that make up the University of Maryland, Baltimore campus, the School of Medicine has a total workforce of nearly 7,000 individuals. The combined School and Medical System (“University of Maryland Medicine”) has an annual budget of over $6 billion and an economic impact of more than $15 billion on the state and local community. The School of Medicine faculty, which ranks as the 8th highest among public medical schools in research productivity, is an innovator in translational medicine, with 600 active patents and 24 start-up companies. The School works locally, nationally, and globally, with research and treatment facilities in 36 countries around the world.

Visit medschool.umaryland.edu

Contact

Institute of Human Virology
Nora Samaranayake
Chief Communications & Public Affairs Officer
(443) 823-0613 (phone)
(410) 706-1952 (fax)
nsamaranayake@ihv.umaryland.edu

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