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Dual Use Research: H5N1 Influenza Virus and Beyond


for Members

Dual Use Research: H5N1 Influenza Virus and Beyond

Thursday, February 2, 2012

The New York Academy of Sciences

Presented By

Presented by the Emerging Infectious Diseases & Microbiology Discussion Group of the New York Academy of Sciences


Watch full video footage of the event

The US National Science Advisory Board for Biosecurity recently recommended that Nature and Science ask the authors of highly controversial studies with the avian influenza virus, H5N1, to remove certain methodological details. This perceived censorship, which aimed to minimize the risk of these findings being misused by would-be bioterrorists, is unprecedented and has sparked heated controversy in the scientific community. A discussion between scientists, publishers and legal experts will explore the myriad issues surrounding the impending publication of these two studies and measures that will need to be undertaken to ensure the safety and security of future such research.

Join us for a networking reception from 8:00 to 9:00 pm. This event is also available as a webinar.

Registration Pricing

Student / Postdoc / Fellow Member:$0
Student / Postdoc / Fellow Nonmember:$15



Jennifer Henry, PhD

The New York Academy of Sciences


W. Ian Lipkin, MD

Center for Infection & Immunity, Columbia University

W. Ian Lipkin, MD, John Snow Professor of Epidemiology and Professor of Neurology and Pathology at Columbia University is internationally recognized for the development and implementation of molecular methods for microbial surveillance and discovery. He directs the Center for Infection and Immunity, the World Health Organization Collaborating Centre on Diagnostics, Surveillance and Immunotherapeutics for Emerging Infectious and Zoonotic Diseases, and the Northeast Biodefense Center, and is co-chair of the National Biosurveillance Advisory Subcommittee. A graduate of Sarah Lawrence College, he obtained his MD at Rush Medical College, Medicine Residency at the University of Washington, Neurology Residency at the UCSF, and Fellowship with Michael Oldstone at The Scripps Research Institute. His contributions include the first use of purely molecular methods to identify an infectious agent; implication of West Nile virus as the cause of the encephalitis in North America in 1999; invention of MassTag PCR and the first panmicrobial microarray; first use of deep sequencing in pathogen discovery; discovery or molecular characterization of more than 500 viruses including rhinovirus C, Dandenong, and LuJo; and establishment of the largest prospective birth cohort focused on pathogenesis and biomarker discovery. He served in Beijing as an intermediary between the WHO and the Chinese government during the SARS outbreak of 2003, and co-directed SARS research efforts in China with current Minister of Health Chen Zhu. His honors include the following: Pew Scholar in the Biomedical Sciences, Japanese Human Science Foundation Visiting Professor, Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons Visiting Bruenn Professor, American Society of Microbiology Foundation Lecturer, Ellison Medical Foundation Senior Scholar in Global Infectious Disease, Fellow of the New York Academy of Sciences, Distinguished Lecturer of the National Center for Infectious Diseases, Fellow of the American Society for Microbiology, John Courage Professor National University of Singapore, Kinyoun Lecturer National Institutes of Health, Fellow of the Wildlife Conservation Society, Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and Member of the Association of American Physicians.


Arturo Casadevall, MD, PhD

Albert Einstein College of Medicine; Member, NSABB

Arturo Casadevall, MD, PhD is the Leo and Julia Forchheimer Professor of Microbiology & Immunology at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University in the Bronx, New York. He is Chairman of the Department of Microbiology and Immunology and served as Director of the Division of Infectious Diseases at the Montefiore Medical Center at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine from 2000–2006. Dr Casadevall received both his MD and PhD (biochemistry) degrees from New York University in New York, New York. Subsequently, he completed internship and residency in internal medicine at Bellevue Hospital in New York, New York. Later he completed subspecialty training in Infectious Diseases at the Montefiore Medical Center and Albert Einstein College of Medicine. Dr. Casadevall major research interests are in fungal pathogenesis and the mechanism of antibody action. In the area of Biodefense Dr. Casadevall has an active research program to understand the mechanisms of antibody-mediated neutralization of Bacillus anthracis toxins. He has authored over 500 scientific papers. Dr. Casadevall was elected to membership in the American Society for Clinical Investigation, the American Academy of Physicians, and the American Academy of Microbiology. He was elected a fellow of the American Academy for the Advancement of Science and has received numerous honors including the Solomon A Berson Medical Alumni Achievement Award in Basic Science from the NYU School of Medicine, the Maxwell L. Littman Award (mycology award), the Rhoda Benham Award from Medical Mycology Society of America, and the Kass Lecture of the Infectious Disease Society of America. Dr. Casadevall is the Editor in Chief of mBio, the first open access general journal of the American Society of Microbiology. He serves in the editorial board of the Journal of Clinical Investigation, The Journal of Experimental Medicine, and The Journal of Infectious Diseases. Previously he served as Editor of Infection and Immunity. He has served in numerous NIH committees including those that drafted the NIAID Strategic Plan and the Blue Ribbon Panel on Biodefense Research. Dr. Casadevall served on the NAS committee that reviewed the science behind the FBI investigation of the anthrax attacks in 2001. He is currently a member of the National Science Advisory Board for Biosecurity and co-chaired the NIAID Board of Scientific counselors.

Laurie Garrett, PhD

Council on Foreign Relations

Laurie Garrett is currently the Senior Fellow for Global Health at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York. Garrett is the only writer ever to have been awarded all three of the Big "Ps" of journalism: The Peabody, The Polk and The Pulitzer. Garrett is also the best-selling author of The Coming Plague: Newly Emerging Diseases in a World Out of Balance and Betrayal of Trust: The Collapse of Global Public Health. Her most recent book is I Heard the Sirens Scream: How Americans Responded to the 9/11 and Anthrax Attacks. During her time as Senior Fellow for Global Health at the Council on Foreign Relations, Garrett has written several reports and articles including: HIV and National Security: Where are the Links?, A Council Report (Council on Foreign Relations Press, 2005); "The Next Pandemic?" (Foreign Affairs, July/August 2005); "The Lessons of HIV/AIDS" (Foreign Affairs, July/August 2005); and "The Challenge of Global Health" (Foreign Affairs, January/February 2007), The Future of Foreign Assistance Amid Global Economic and Financial Crisis, A Council on Foreign Relations Action Plan (2009); "Castrocare in Crisis" (Foreign Affairs, July/August 2010). Garrett is a member of the National Association of Science Writers, and served as the organization's President during the mid-1990s. She currently serves on the advisory board for the Noguchi Prize, François-Xavier Bagnoud (FXB) Center for Health and Human Rights, and the Health Worker Global Policy Advisory Group, and is a Principal Member of the Modernizing Foreign Assistance Network (MFAN). Garrett also chairs the Scientific Advisory Panel to the United Nations High Level Commission on HIV Prevention in collaboration with UNAIDS. She is an expert on global health with a particular focus on newly emerging and re-emerging diseases, bioterrorism, public health and its effects on foreign policy and national security.

Barbara R. Jasny, PhD


Barbara Jasny serves as the Deputy Editor for Commentary for Science, the weekly journal of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). In this position, she coordinates the activities of editors responsible for the Perspectives, Letters, Book Reviews and Policy Forums. She also solicits research papers and evaluates research reports for publication in genetics, medicine, and the social sciences. She has taken the lead in special issues on the genome project, AIDS, molecular medicine, network analysis, and science & society for the past 25 years. Dr. Jasny has a BA with honors in Biology from New York University, and a PhD in Molecular Biology from Rockefeller University; she has conducted research in virus-host cell interactions, DNA replication, and cellular senescence. She is an elected fellow of the AAAS and has been an advisor to the American Society for Gene Therapy and the Functional Genomics Data Society. She is author of more than 60 research papers, editorials, and overviews, and has been involved in communicating science in books, articles, posters, virtual presentations, CDs, and podcasts.

Véronique Kiermer, PhD

Nature Publishing Group

Véronique Kiermer obtained her PhD in molecular biology from the Université Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium. She did postdoctoral work in the laboratory of Dr Eric Verdin at the Gladstone Institute of Virology and Immunology, University of California, San Francisco, studying the transcriptional regulation of HIV. She then worked on gene therapy projects at the biotechnology company Cell Genesys before moving to Nature Publishing Group in 2004. At NPG, she was the founding Chief Editor of Nature Methods and subsequently took on publishing responsibility for the title and other online products. In October 2010, she became Executive Editor for Nature and the Nature journals, overseeing editorial policies, editorial quality assurance and Researcher Services.

Michael T. Osterholm, PhD, MPH

Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy, University of Minnesota; Member, NSABB

Dr. Osterholm is director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy (CIDRAP), director of the NIH-supported Center of Excellence for Influenza Research and Surveillance within CIDRAP, a professor in the Division of Environmental Health Sciences, School of Public Health, and an adjunct professor in the Medical School, University of Minnesota. He is also a member of the Institute of Medicine (IOM) of the National Academy of Sciences and the Council of Foreign Relations. In June 2005 Dr. Osterholm was appointed by Michael Leavitt, Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), to the newly established National Science Advisory Board on Biosecurity. In July 2008, he was named to the University of Minnesota Academic Health Center’s Academy of Excellence in Health Research. In October 2008, he was appointed to the World Economic Forum Working Group on Pandemics. From 2001 through early 2005, Dr. Osterholm, in addition to his role at CIDRAP, served as a Special Advisor to then–HHS Secretary Tommy G. Thompson on issues related to bioterrorism and public health preparedness. He was also appointed to the Secretary's Advisory Council on Public Health Preparedness. On April 1, 2002, Dr. Osterholm was appointed by Thompson to be his representative on the interim management team to lead the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). With the appointment of Dr. Julie Gerberding as director of the CDC on July 3, 2002, Dr. Osterholm was asked by Thompson to assist Dr. Gerberding on his behalf during the transition period. He filled that role through January 2003. Previously, Dr. Osterholm served for 24 years (1975-1999) in various roles at the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH), the last 15 as state epidemiologist and chief of the Acute Disease Epidemiology Section. While at the MDH, Osterholm and his team were leaders in the area of infectious disease epidemiology. He has led numerous investigations of outbreaks of international importance, including foodborne diseases, the association of tampons and toxic shock syndrome (TSS), the transmission of hepatitis B in healthcare settings, and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection in healthcare workers. In addition, his team conducted numerous studies regarding infectious diseases in child-care settings, vaccine-preventable diseases (particularly Haemophilusinfluenzae type b and hepatitis B), Lyme disease, and other emerging infections. They were also among the first to call attention to the changing epidemiology of foodborne diseases. Dr. Osterholm is the Principal Investigator and Director of the NIH-supported Minnesota Center of Excellence for Influenza Research and Surveillance and chairs the Executive Committee of the Centers of Excellence Influenza Research and Surveillance network. Dr. Osterholm has been an international leader on the critical concern regarding our preparedness for an influenza pandemic. His invited papers in the journals Foreign Affairs, the New England Journal of Medicine, and Nature detail the threat of an influenza pandemic before the recent pandemic and the steps we must take to better prepare for such events. Dr. Osterholm has also been an international leader on the growing concern regarding the use of biological agents as catastrophic weapons targeting civilian populations. In that role, he served as a personal advisor to the late King Hussein of Jordan. Dr. Osterholm provides a comprehensive and pointed review of America's current state of preparedness for a bioterrorism attack in his New York Times best-selling book, Living Terrors: What America Needs to Know to Survive the Coming Bioterrorist Catastrophe. The author of more than 315 papers and abstracts, including 21 book chapters, Dr. Osterholm is a frequently invited guest lecturer on the topic of epidemiology of infectious diseases. He serves on the editorial boards of nine journals, including Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology and Microbial Drug Resistance: Mechanisms, Epidemiology and Disease, and he is a reviewer for 24 additional journals, including the New England Journal of Medicine, the Journal of the AmericanMedical Association, and Science. He is past president of the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CSTE) and has served on the CDC's National Center for Infectious Diseases Board of Scientific Counselors from 1992 to 1997. Dr. Osterholm served on the IOM Forum on Microbial Threats from 1994 through 2011. He has served on the IOM Committee on Emerging Microbial Threats to Health in the 21st Century and the IOM Committee on Food Safety, Production to Consumption, and he was a reviewer for the IOM Report on Chemical and Biological Terrorism. As a member of the American Society for Microbiology (ASM), Dr. Osterholm has served on the Committee on Biomedical Research of the Public and Scientific Affairs Board, the Task Force on Biological Weapons, and the Task Force on Antibiotic Resistance. He is a frequent consultant to the World Health Organization (WHO), the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the Department of Defense, and the CDC. He is a fellow of the American College of Epidemiology and the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA). Dr. Osterholm has received numerous honors for his work, including an honorary doctorate from Luther College; the Pump Handle Award, CSTE; the Charles C. Shepard Science Award, CDC; the Harvey W. Wiley Medal, FDA; the Squibb Award, IDSA; and the Wade Hampton Frost Leadership Award, American Public Health Association. He also has been the recipient of six major research awards from the NIH and the CDC.

Peter Palese, PhD

Mount Sinai School of Medicine

Dr. Palese is Professor of Microbiology and Chair of the Department of Microbiology at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York. His research includes work on the replication of RNA-containing viruses with a special emphasis on influenza viruses, which are negative-strand RNA viruses. Specifically, he established the first genetic maps for influenza A, B and C viruses, identified the function of several viral genes, and defined the mechanism of neuraminidase inhibitors (which are now FDA-approved antivirals). Dr. Palese also pioneered the field of reverse genetics for negative strand RNA viruses, which allows the introduction of site-specific mutations into the genomes of these viruses. This technique is crucial for the study of the structure/function relationships of viral genes, for investigation of viral pathogenicity and for development and manufacture of novel vaccines. In addition, an improvement of the technique has been effectively used by him and his colleagues to reconstruct and study the pathogenicity of the highly virulent but extinct 1918 pandemic influenza virus. His recent work in collaboration with Garcia-Sastre has revealed that most negative strand RNA viruses possess proteins with interferon antagonist activity, enabling them to counteract the antiviral response of the infected host. Dr. Palese was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 2000 for his seminal studies on influenza viruses. At present he serves on the editorial board for the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. He has been a Corresponding Member of the Austrian Academy of Sciences since 2002 and a Member of the German Academy of Sciences Leopoldina since 2006. Dr. Palese was president of the Harvey Society in 2004/2005 and president of the American Society for Virology in 20052006. He was the recipient of the Robert Koch Prize in 2006, of the Charles C. Shepard Science Award in 2008 and of the 2010 European Virology Award (EVA).

Vincent Racaniello, PhD

Columbia University

Vincent Racaniello is Higgins Professor of Microbiology and Immunology at the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Columbia University. He received an AB degree in Biology from Cornell University in 1974. In 1980, for work carried out with Dr. Peter Palese, he received the PhD in Biomedical Sciences from Mt. Sinai School of Medicine of the City University of New York. After postdoctoral work with Dr. David Baltimore at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, in 1982 he joined the College of Physicians and Surgeons as Assistant Professor of Microbiology. Dr. Racaniello is the recipient of an Irma T. Hirschl Career Scientist Award, the Searle Scholars Award, the Eli Lilly Award of the American Society for Microbiology in 1992, and an NIH Merit Award. He was a Harvey Society Lecturer in 1991, University Lecturer at Columbia University in 1995, the First Lamb Professor at Vanderbilt University and presented the Hilleman Lecture at the University of Chicago in 1993. Dr. Racaniello has served as an Editor for the Journal of Virology and the Journal of Clinical Investigation, and is currently an Associate Editor at PLoS Pathogens. He previously served as a member of the World Health Organization Steering Committee on Hepatitis/Polio, Chair of the Virology Study Section of the National Institutes of Health, and Co-Chair of the Gordon Conference on Viruses and Cells. He is a co-author of Principles of Virology, Third Edition (ASM Press), an established virology textbook, and blogs and podcasts about viruses at The research in Dr. Racaniello's laboratory has focussed on the mechanisms of poliovirus replication and pathogenesis. His research has produced the first infectious clone of an RNA virus, the discovery of the cell receptor for poliovirus, and the establishment of a transgenic mouse model for poliomyelitis. These contributions have revolutionized the study of animal RNA viruses.

Alan S. Ruldolph, PhD

Defense Threat Reduction Agency

Dr. Alan S. Rudolph, a member of the Senior Service Executive, is the Director for the Joint Science & Technology Office (JSTO) for the Chemical and Biological Defense Program.

Dr. Rudolph has led an active career in translating interdisciplinary life sciences into useful applications for biotechnology development. His experience spans basic research to advanced development in academia, government laboratories, and most recently in the non-profit and private sectors. He has published over 100 technical publications in areas including molecular biophysics, lipid self assembly, drug delivery, blood substitutes, medical imaging, tissue engineering, neuroscience and diagnostics.

He has served in positions of leadership at the Naval Research Laboratory, Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency and Industry. As Chief Executive Officer of Adlyfe Inc., a diagnostic platform company, and Board Chairman of Cellphire Inc., Dr. Rudolph focused on development of novel hemostatic biologics for bleeding injuries. He has, also, started an international non-profit, connecting the United States and Brazil in biotechnology efforts and science education.


For sponsorship opportunities please contact Carmen McCaffery at or 212.298.8642.

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  • Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University
  • The Center for Infection and Immunity

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