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Health - Science & Technology

Drexel University College of Medicine Hosts Unique International Symposium

June 7, 2012

A medical researcher works in the lab.
Drexel's International Symposium on Molecular Medicine and Infectious Disease will be the first meeting of its kind in the region, and is intended to become an annual event.

Top infectious disease research scientists from across the country and around the world, including a Nobel Prize winner, will gather in Philadelphia later this month when Drexel University College of Medicine hosts the 2012 International Symposium on Molecular Medicine and Infectious Disease. The symposium will be held June 19-21 in the New College Building (15th & Vine Streets) in Geary Auditorium B.

Nobel Laureate among the speakers to receive 2012 Drexel Prize

Presentations will highlight ongoing investigations in the areas of HIV/AIDS, including brain impairment and neuroprotection and the impact of aging on the disease; molecular mechanisms of malarial disease; pathogenic mechanisms of hepatitis B/C; and biomarkers of human infectious disease, cancer, and neurologic disease among other topics.

In addition, Drexel University College of Medicine will award three Drexel Prizes for scientific excellence in Translational Medicine, Infectious Disease, and Immunology to eminent scientists, who will present their state-of-the-art investigations in lectures scheduled during each day of the symposium:

  • Drexel Prize in Translational Medicine: Paul Offit, M.D., Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. "The Rotavirus Vaccine: From Bench to Bedside"
  • Drexel Prize in Infectious Disease: John Mekalanos, Ph.D., Harvard Medical School. "A View to a Kill: Molecular and Cellular Interactions in Pathogenesis"
  • Drexel Prize in Immunology: 2011 Nobel Prize recipient Bruce Beutler, M.D., University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center. "How Mammals Sense Infection"

The symposium will also showcase important accomplishments of Drexel University College of Medicine faculty, postdoctoral fellows, and graduate students concerning molecular mechanisms, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of infectious, inflammatory, oncogenic and metabolic diseases with national and global impact.

"We are particularly excited to be able to highlight Drexel scientific accomplishments while recognizing the scientific achievements of our Drexel Prize awardees in Translational Medicine, Infectious Disease, and Immunology," said Brian Wigdahl, Ph.D., professor and chair of the Department of Microbiology & Immunology and director of Drexel University College of Medicine's Institute for Molecular Medicine and Infectious Disease.

Wigdahl, who spearheaded the symposium, says it's a natural fit for Drexel.

"At the heart of the Drexel University scientific community and particularly of our Institute for Molecular Medicine and Infectious Disease is the performance and promotion of basic scientific discovery, and then to utilize innovative collaborative interactions within academia and the pharmaceutical industry to translate today's discoveries into tomorrow's products to prevent and treat human disease."

Research progress by Drexel University College of Medicine investigators and other collaborators concerning the treatment and prevention of malaria, hepatitis and hepatic cancer, HIV/AIDS, and other diseases has led to the delivery of a number of Drexel discoveries into the treatment and/or prevention pipeline.

This is the first meeting of its kind in the region, which Wigdahl and his Drexel colleagues plan to make an annual event. The three-day agenda is available online. There is no fee to attend, but registration is required and can be accomplished at www.drexelmed.edu/immid.

Media Contact:

Rachel Quimby

rachel.quimby@drexelmed.edu

215.255.7328