– Prof. Clemens, Prof. Jan R. Holmgren cited for leading the development of oral cholera vaccine
Professor John D. Clemens, former Director General of the International Vaccine Institute (IVI), and Professor Jan R. Holmgren, received the prestigious Prince Mahidol Award in the field of Public Health for their 30 years of work that culminated in the development of an oral cholera vaccine.
From left: Professors Mary-Claire King, Jan R. Holmgren, John D. Clemens, and Brian J. Druker at the Presentation Ceremony of the Prince Mahidol Award 2018 on January 31, 2019
Professor Clemens is now the Executive Director of icddr,b in Bangladesh, and Professor Holmgren works at Gothenburg University in Sweden.
Prof. Clemens served as the first Director General of IVI from 1999 to 2011. Under his leadership, IVI coordinated a public-private partnership that led to the development of the world’s first low-cost oral cholera vaccine. The vaccine was transferred to Shantha Biotech in India and EuBiologics in South Korea, which brought the ‘Shanchol’ and ‘Euvichol (Euvichol-Plus)’ vaccines to market. More than 25 million doses of the vaccine have been administered in over 20 countries worldwide. Prof. Holmgren also served on IVI’s Board of Trustees and Scientific Advisory Group in the 2000s, as they continued collaboration to accelerate the development of OCV.
“On behalf of IVI, I am pleased to join icddr.b and other partners in extending congratulations to Professors Clemens and Holmgren,” said Dr. Jerome Kim, Director General of IVI, “IVI looks forward to continued partnership with them in our concerted efforts to make new vaccines available and accessible to people who need them the most.”
In addition to Prof. Clemens and Prof. Holmgren, the Prince Mahidol Award 2018 in the field of medicine was bestowed upon Professor Brian J. Druker, who made a significant research discovery in the field of targeted cancer therapy, and Professor Mary-Claire King, who discovered a gene which causes breast cancer, the most common cancer among women.