Several women, most prominently Gertrude Elion, have had major impact on the field of antiviral therapy and have greatly contributed to the field. Yet, women still face some challenges in STEM in general, including the specific area of antiviral discovery and development. To recognize the major contributions of women in the general field of antiviral prophylaxis and therapy, and support women’s careers in the field, ISAR granted its first Women in Science Award (ISAR) in 2017. The awardees since, Drs. Priscilla Yang, Desiree LaBeaud, Grace Zhou and Anna Wald have continuously added to the prestige of this Award. ISAR is excited to announce now our 2021Women in Science Awardee, Dr. Graciela Andrei.
Graciela Andrei holds a PhD in Biological Sciences from the Faculty of Sciences, University of Buenos Aires, where she received a competitive fellowship from the National Research Council (1984-1989). She undertook a post-doctoral training on antiviral chemotherapy under Prof. Eric De Clercq at the Rega Institute, with a focus on herpesviruses, where she was recipient of a KU Leuven fellowship (1989-1996). In 1997, she performed a visiting research training at the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics, University of Alabama at Birmingham and was appointed associate researcher at the Rega Institute (1997-2005). With her appointment as assistant professor at the Faculty of Medicine KU Leuven (Belgium), in 2005, she directed her research interest to chemotherapy of viral diseases, with emphasis on different herpesviruses, poxviruses, polyomaviruses and papillomaviruses. In 2008, she was promoted to Associate Professor. Her research is currently directed to the investigation of the molecular mechanism of action of antiviral drug resistance and pathogenicity of viral mutants, competitive fitness of drug-resistant viruses, three-dimensional culture models for the study of viral pathogenicity and antivirals efficacy (including SARS-CoV-2), the development of novel strategies to target cancer cells and the tumor microenvironment, and the molecular mechanism of action of the anticancer activity of nucleotide analogues. In 2009, she participated to the setup of the translational research platform RegaVir for typing drug resistance among DNA viruses.
She has authored or coauthored more than 350 papers in international peer-reviewed journals and 6 book chapters. She has been a member of the International Society for Antiviral Research since 1989, serving as Secretary between 2012 and 2019, and she has consistently provided service to the society as member of several committees. She is a member of the editorial board of Antiviral Research, Archives of Virology, Viruses, and PLoS One, and is main editorof the ‘Antivirals and Vaccines’ section within Frontiers in Virology. Graciela kindly serves as reviewer for various journals.
Please join ISAR in congratulating Graciela in her latest award and let’s await with excitement to her lecture on the genetic diversity and evolution of herpesviruses at the upcoming virtual ICAR, March 2021.
January 15, 2021
About ISAR NEWS
The official newsletter of the International Society for Antiviral Research
© Publications workgroup (Communications & Outreach Committee) and Luis M Schang, Editor