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26th ICAR - Confirmed Speakers
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Dr. John C. Martin, Ph.D. is the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Gilead Sciences, and is a member of the Board of Directors of the California Healthcare Institute and Gen-Probe Incorporated. He also serves on the University of Southern California Board of Trustees. Dr. Martin previously served as President of the International Society for Antiviral Research, Chairman of the Board of Directors of BayBio and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the California Healthcare Institute. He holds a Ph.D. in organic chemistry from the University of Chicago and an MBA in marketing from Golden Gate University. Dr. Martin has received the Isbell Award from the American Chemical Society and the Gertrude B. Elion Award for Scientific Excellence from the International Society for Antiviral Research. In 2008, Dr. Martin was inducted into the National Academy of Engineering of the National Academies.

Dr. Eva Harris is a professor in the School of Public Health at the University of California, Berkeley, and the founder and president of the Sustainable Sciences Institute. She focuses her research efforts on combating diseases that primarily affect people in developing nations. Fluent in French and Spanish, Dr. Harris earned her bachelor’s degree in biochemical sciences from Harvard University and her Ph.D. in molecular and cell biology at UC Berkeley. From 1997-2003, Dr. Harris served as co-director of the Fogarty International Emerging Infectious Diseases Training Program at UC Berkeley. Dr. Harris hopes that her research on the molecular biology of the dengue virus will eventually lead to a vaccine or antiviral therapies, while her work in dengue-endemic countries like Nicaragua will lead to better control of the mosquito that transmits dengue.

Christos J. Petropoulos, Ph.D. is Vice President of Research and Development and Chief Scientific Officer of Monogram Biosciences, as well as Vice President at LabCorp Inc. Dr. Petropoulos joined Monogram as Director of Research and Development in August 1996, became Senior Director of Research and Development in September 1997, was named Vice President, Research and Development in November 1999 and was appointed as Chief Scientific Officer in December 2004. From 1992 to 1996, Dr. Petropoulos was a scientist at Genentech where he headed the Molecular Virology Laboratory from 1992-1996 as well as the Research Virology and Molecular Detection Laboratories from 1994 to 1996. Dr. Petropoulos has co-authored over 140 scientific publications, is co-inventor on 12 issued US patents and has been awarded 12 research grants from the National Institutes of Health.

Dr. James McKim graduated with high honors from the doctoral program in biochemical and molecular toxicology at Oregon State University and trained as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Kansas Medical School. He is a diplomat of the American Board of Toxicology and has served as President of the Michigan Society of Toxicology.  Dr. McKim has held many positions in his 20 years as a toxicologist. He was Assistant Professor at the University of Colorado School of Medicine where he researched mechanisms underlying liver diseases in children. He was awarded the Dow Corning Technical Achievement Award for the research he led as Head of the Biochemical Molecular Toxicology Group on the biological effects of silicone products. Dr. McKim has published numerous scientific manuscripts, book chapters and reviews, and is a frequently-requested speaker at conferences and events in the US and around the world.


Robert T. Schooley, M.D. is the Division Head and Professor of Medicine in the Department of Medicine, Division of Infectious Diseases, at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD). Dr. Schooley received his medical degree from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in 1974 and completed his medical house staff training at the Johns Hopkins Hospital in 1976. He completed fellowships in infectious diseases at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and at the Massachusetts General Hospital before joining the faculty of Harvard Medical School in 1981.
He was recruited to the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center in 1990 to serve as Head of the Division of Infectious Diseases. While at Colorado he was elected to serve as Chair of the NIAID’s AIDS Clinical Trials Group (ACTG) which he headed from 1995 – 2002. During his tenure as Group Chair the ACTG expanded to include research sites in Latin America, the Caribbean, South Asia and Africa and is now the largest and most productive multinational clinical and translational research organization focusing on the pathogenesis and therapy of HIV and its complications.
He was recruited to the University of California, San Diego in 2005 where he now serves as Head of the Division of Infectious Diseases. His current research interests include HIV and HCV pathogenesis and therapy and infections that cause morbidity and mortality in resource limited settings. 

Dr. Grant received in his M.D. degree from the University of California, San Francisco in 1988. Dr. Grant then completed a research fellowship in Molecular Medicine at University of California, San Francisco. After internal medicine, pulmonary subspecialty, and research training at University of California, San Francisco and the Gladstone Institute of Virology and Immunology, he joined the faculty of University of California, San Francisco in 1996. His major academic activities include directing the Gladstone-UCSF Laboratory of Clinical Virology, serving as Associate Director of the UCSF Center for AIDS Research, directing a research laboratory, and clinical practice in the Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine at San Francisco General Hospital.

Professor Richard Whitley, completed undergraduate studies at Duke University. He completed medical school at George Washington University and completed a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. During postdoctoral training he developed an interest is pursuing molecular pathogenesis of herpes simplex virus infections. These studies have been extended to collaboration with investigators at the University of Chicago through joint program projects. In addition, he is responsible for the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Collaborative Antiviral Study Group, a multicenter collaboration of investigators attempting to improve the treatment of human herpes simplex and varicella zoster infections.

Erik De Clercq  A pioneer in antiviral research, Dr. Erik De Clercq began his medical career in 1966, received his certification in Clinical Pathology in 1971, and his Ph.D. the following year. While at the Rega Institute for Medical Research, he led teams that discovered some of the first anti-HIV medications and played a central role in developing the paradigm-shifting concept of combination therapy for HIV, which today is the most effective treatment strategy for HIV/AIDS patients. 
Over his prodigious career, Dr. De Clercq’s research focused on the development of new therapies, and in particular, the development of new agents against viral infections. He is widely recognized for his seminal work in the field of nucleotide analogs, which were the first broad-spectrum antivirals, and sparked a new era in antiviral development.

Tomas Cihlar is a Senior Director of Biology at Gilead. After receiving PhD in Biochemistry from IOCB in Prague, Czech Republic in 1994, he jointed Gilead as a postdoctoral fellow. In subsequent years, he focused on the pharmacology of antiviral nucleotide analogs and supported the preclinical and clinical development of several Gilead’s products including Viread, Hepsera, and Vistide. Tomas Cihlar is currently responsible for coordinating virology and viral immunology research at Gilead including programs for the cure of chronic viral infections. He co-invented GS-7340, a novel form of tenofovir currently in clinical development and led a team that identified a novel nucleotide HIV RT inhibitor GS-9131. In 2006, he received William Prusoff Young Investigator Award from the International Society of Antiviral Research for his work on antiviral nucleotide analogs.

Ernesto Freire, is the Henry Walters Professor at The Johns Hopkins University. He has been a member of the Department of Biology and Biophysics since 1986. Dr. Freire conducts research on drug design against HIV infection, hepatitis c and other viral diseases. He pioneered the development of drug design strategies using thermodynamics and microcalorimetric techniques. These strategies are aimed at achieving extremely high affinity, high selectivity and superior resistance profiles. Dr. Freire’s research also addresses the mechanisms and thermodynamics of structural stability of proteins and protein/protein interactions.

He also holds a joint appointment in the Department of Biophysics and Biophysical Chemistry at the Johns Hopkins Medical School, and is a member of the Steering Committee of the Johns Hopkins Malaria Research Institute.

Dr. Valentino J. Stella, Val, Ph.D. serves as Advisor of Orbis Biosciences, Inc. He is an expert in the area of chemical kinetics and his research focuses on improving drug delivery through the use of prodrugs and cyclodextrins. He is the Inventor or Co-inventor of Viread(R), Aquavan(R), Fosphenytoin(R), and Captisol(R).

Since April 2004, Dr. Stella has been the Chairman of Chemistry Advisory Board for Tapestry Pharmaceuticals ( NaPro BioTherapeutics Inc.). Dr. Stella serves as Member of the Scientific Advisory Board at CritiTech, Inc. Dr. Stella serves as Distinguished ... Professor of Pharmaceutical Chemistry at the University of Kansas. He received his Ph.D. in Analytical Pharmaceutical Chemistry and Pharmaceutics from the University of Kansas in 1971. He holds B. Pharm. from Victorian College of Pharmacy in 1967.

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