NIH/NIAID´s research panel dedicated to addressing Asia´s health problems
SEOUL— Dr. John Clemens, the Director-General of the International Vaccine Institute (IVI) has been named the Chair of the United States Panel on Cholera and Other Bacterial Enteric Infections by Dr. Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases of the US National Institutes of Health (NIAID). The Panel is the oldest panel of the US-Japan Cooperative Medical Sciences Program (USJCMSP). Dr. Clemens succeeds Prof. John Mekalanos, Chairman of the Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics, Harvard Medical School.
The USJCMSP was established in 1965 by President Lyndon Johnson to foster collaborative research between US and Japanese scientists to solve Asia’s major health problems, especially among populations in developing countries. The US panel is hosted by the US NIAID.
As chairman, Dr. Clemens will lead a panel of distinguished US scientists and will act as a catalyst in stimulating collaborative research in cholera and other bacterial infections between US and Japanese investigators. In this capacity, he will attend and present research data at conferences of the Joint Committee, which aims to improve diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of the diseases being studied by the panels.
The USJCMSP consists of a board on immunology, and panels on cholera and other enteric infectious, AIDS, acute respiratory infections, environment, hepatitis, leprosy/tuberculosis, nutrition and metabolism, parasitic diseases, and selected viral diseases.
Dr. Clemens has served as a member of the US panel since 1992. His new appointment comes after he was named one of 50 foremost experts on global health in the U.S by the Paul G. Rogers Society for Global Health Research last month.
Dr. Clemens, one of the world’s leading authorities on cholera and on vaccine evaluation, began his first term of office as IVI´s first Director General in 1999, and was reappointed in 2004. He also started his term as a member of the GAVI Alliance Board, the world’s largest private-public alliance on vaccine and immunization, early this year.
The International Vaccine Institute (IVI), based in Seoul, Korea, is the world’s only international organization devoted exclusively to developing and introducing new and improved vaccines to protect the world’s poorest people, especially children in developing countries. Established at the initiative of the United Nations Development Programme, the IVI operates under a treaty signed by 40 countries and the World Health Organization, and conducts research in 22 countries of Asia, Africa and Latin America.