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Committee Membership Information

Project Title: Joint U.S.-Russian Assessment of Bioengagement: Impacts, Lessons Learned, and a Path Toward Future Collaboration

PIN: PGA-DSC-C-10-03        

Major Unit:
Policy and Global Affairs

Sub Unit: Development, Security and Cooperation


Schweitzer, Glenn

Subject/Focus Area:  Agriculture; Biology and Life Sciences; Engineering and Technology; Health and Medicine; Math, Chemistry, and Physics; Policy for Science and Technology

Committee Membership
Date Posted:   01/07/2011

Dr. Kavita M. Berger
American Association for the Advancement

Kavita Marfatia Berger is an Associate Program Director at the AAAS Center for Science, Technology and Security Policy. She has been with AAAS since 2005. Her area of expertise is in biosecurity, global health, and public health preparedness and response. Current activities focus on building trust between disparate groups to address complex science and security issues. She works with the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s WMD Directorate, Department of Health and Human Services, Department of State, leading scientists, and research institution administrators to address biosecurity issues. She received her BS in molecular genetics from The Ohio State University. There, she worked on project related to osteoporosis and cancer for her undergraduate Honors thesis. Kavita obtained her Ph.D. in molecular genetics and molecular biology at Emory University. Her dissertation focused on mRNA export and nuclear transport. During her post-doctoral fellowship, she conducted research on development of HIV microbicides and HIV and smallpox vaccines, and immunological characterization of the human cervix.

Dr. David R. Franz
Midwest Research Institute

David Franz, DVM, PhD, is Vice President & Chief Biological Scientist of the Midwest Research Institute, and Senior Advisor (Biosecurity Engagement) to the Office of the Assistant to the Secretary of Defense for Nuclear, Chemical and Biological Defense Programs. Dr. Franz was the Chief Inspector on three UN Special Commission biological warfare missions to Iraq and served as technical advisor on long-term monitoring. He also served as a member of the first two US-UK teams that visited Russia in support of the Trilateral Joint Statement on Biological Weapons and as a member of the Trilateral Experts’ Committee for biological weapons negotiations. Dr. Franz served in the U.S. Army Medical Research and Materiel Command for 23 of 27 years on active duty and retired as Colonel. He served as Commander of the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases (USAMRIID) and as Deputy Commander of the Medical Research and Materiel Command. Prior to joining the Command, he served as Group Veterinarian for the 10th Special Forces Group (Airborne). The current focus of his activities relates to the role of international engagement in the life sciences as a component of national security policy. Dr. Franz holds a D.V.M. from Kansas State University and a Ph.D. in Physiology from Baylor College of Medicine.

Dr. Tatiana Gremyakova
International Science and Technology Centre

Tatiana Gremyakova D.Sci (Med), Ph.D. is a Chief Science Coordinator in Biotechnology with the International Science and Technology Centre. She was previously a Chairmen of ISTC BioCom where she developed and managed projects with governmental (DTRA, DARPA, DHHS, USDA, IPP, BII) and business partners. She has participated in developing more than 150 international projects (R&D and infrastructural) in medicine, pharmacology, agriculture, industrial biotech, biosafety and physical security in Russia, Armenia, Byelorussia, Georgia, Kazakhstan. Currently, Dr. Gremyakova serves as an expert in the Analytical Centre at the RF Government to support projects in governmental activities and projects under RF President’s Commission on modernization and technological development. She will serve in this capacity until 2012. Dr. Gremyakova graduated from the Medico-Biological Faculty of Moscow Medical Institute in 1979, and went on to become a Post-Doctoral Fellow at the Moscow Mechnikov Institute of Vaccine and Sera from 1979-1982. From 1983 to 1998 she graduated from junior to leading scientist at the State Research Centre for Applied Microbiology, Obolensk, Moscow Region. She received her Ph.D. in 1983 and Doctor of Medical Sciences degree in 2004. Her areas of interests are microbiology, biochemistry, diagnostics, drugs and vaccine development, biosafety and biosecurity. She is the author of nearly 70 Russian and international scientific publications.

Dr. Oleg I. Kiselev
Novosibirsk State University

Prof. Oleg I. Kiselev, Academician of RAMS, MD, Ph.D., Sci. D. in Molecular Virology, male, graduated from internal medicine faculty of Academician, Nobel Prize Laureate I.P. Pavlov 1st Medical Institute, 1968. He entered postgraduate school at the Institute of Experimental Medicine, headed at this time by the famous physiologist Academician N.P. Bechtereva in Lab. of Biochemical Genetics. In 1972 he received his Ph.D. degree in Biochemical Genetics at this Institute in Mitochondrial Biogenesis. In 1979 he submitted a doctorial dissertation in the Degree of Molecular Biology. Later he moved to the Ministry of Microbiological Industry as Head of Division of Genetic Engineering for development of recombinant interferons and its manufacturing. During this time (5 years) he patented IL-2 and IFN- alpha producer strains and technology for their production. Later at 1988 he was invited to the position of Director of the Institute of Influenza. During the next 22 years he made this Institute an internationally famous, recognized research institution as National WHO Center for Influenza Control and surveillance. In 2003 he was selected as a co-director, together with Colonel James Neivill, of the International Conference «Strengthening of preparedness to influenza pandemic through civil–military cooperation». At the Institute during past 10 years many international conferences in this field were organized including WHO Workshops. The Institute of Influenza includes Clinical Department headed by Prof. O.I. Kiselev where every year new influenza vaccines are tested and regularly approved according to WHO recommendations. He is a project leader in international grants: «DelNS – vaccine development and production» (Green Hills Biotech.), «Antiinfluenza siRNA» ( SirnaOmics- Washington DC), National Project «Development of a new antiviral drugs and technology for it’s production – Triazavirin- with wide spectrum of antiviral activity» and other projects in the field of influenza studies. O.I. Kiselev personally published 12 books in the fields of influenza, prions, herpes virus infection treatment, papilloma virus pathogenesis and cancer development.

Dr. James W. LeDuc
The University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston

James LeDuc is the director of the Galveston National Laboratory (GNL) located on the campus of the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston, Texas. He formerly served as the GNL’s Deputy Director (2008-2010) and Associate Director for Program Development (2006-2008). He also currently serves as the Director for Global Health in the Institute for Human Infections and Immunity and holds the inaugural Robert E. Shope, MD and John S. Dunn Distinguished Chair in Global Health. Dr. LeDuc relocated to UTMB in late 2006 from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta, Georgia, where he was the Influenza Coordinator. He also served as Director, Division of Viral and Rickettsial Diseases (2000-2005), coordinating research activities, prevention initiatives and outbreak investigations for viral and rickettsial pathogens of global importance, including viral hemorrhagic fevers, influenza and other respiratory infections, childhood viral diseases, and newly emerging diseases such as SARS. He served as the Associate Director for Global Health (1996-2000) in the Office of the Director, National Center for Infectious Diseases at CDC, and was a Medical Officer in charge of arboviruses and viral hemorrhagic fevers at the World Health Organization in Geneva, Switzerland (1992-1996). He also held leadership positions during a 23-year career as a U.S. Army officer in the medical research and development command, with assignments in Brazil, Panama and at various locations in the United States, including the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research and the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases. His professional career began as a field biologist working for the Smithsonian Institution in West Africa. He is a member of various professional organizations, has published over 200 scientific articles and book chapters, and is well recognized as an expert in virus diseases, biodefense and global health.

Dr. Sergey Netesov
Novosibirsk State University

Sergey V. Netesov, Ph.D., D.Sci. (1953) is Vice Rector (Research) at the Novosibirsk State University since November 2007. Before this he served for 30 years at the State Research Center of Virology and Biotechnology “Vector” (Vector) and in 1990 he became its Deputy Director, Research. He graduated from Novosibirsk State University (1975); joined Vector (1977); received Ph.D. (1983) and Doctor of Biology degree (1993). He is a Corresponding Member of Russian Academy of Sciences (1997), a member of the European Academy of Sciences, American Society for Virology, American and the European Biosafety Associations. He received two Russian Government Awards in 1998 and 2006. His research interests include virology and biotechnology. He is the author of 120 publications in Russian and international journals.

Dr. Peter Palese
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. He has over 270 scientific publications that include research 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 and as an editor for the Journal of Virology. Dr. Palese was president of the Harvey Society in 2004, president of the American Society for Virology in 2005 and a recipient of the Robert Koch Prize in 2006 and of the Charles C. Shepard Science Award in 2008.

Dr. Peter H. Raven
Missouri Botanical Garden

Peter H. Raven (Co-Chair) is Director Emeritus of the Missouri Botanical Garden and one of the world's leading botanists and advocates of conservation and biodiversity. In addition, Dr. Raven is past President and Chairman of the Board of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the largest organization of professional scientists in the world. He is also Chairman of the National Geographic Society's Committee for Research and Exploration.
For three decades, Dr. Raven headed the Missouri Botanical Garden, an institution he nurtured to a world-class center for botanical research, education, and horticulture display. Under Dr. Raven's leadership, the Missouri Botanical Garden has become a leader in botanical research in Latin America, Africa, and Asia, with strong programs in North America as well. The Garden's education program in the St. Louis region reaches more than 100,000 students each year and provides professional development for teachers. The splendid horticultural displays attract more than 750,000 visitors to the Garden annually, including tourists to St. Louis from around the United States and the world. He is also the Engelmann Professor of Botany at Washington University in St. Louis. He was a member of the President's Committee of Advisors on Science and Technology during the Clinton Administration. In 2001, he received from the President of the United States the National Medal of Science, the highest award for scientific accomplishment in this country. Dr. Raven served for 12 years as Home Secretary of the National Academy of Sciences, is a member of the academies of science in Argentina, Brazil, China, Denmark, India, Italy, Mexico, Russia, Sweden, the U.K. and several other countries and the Pontifical Academy of Sciences. He was first Chair of the U.S. Civilian Research and Development Foundation, a government-established organization that funds joint research with the independent countries of the former Soviet Union, and served as President of the XVI International Botanical Congress in St. Louis in 1999. Dr. Raven received his Ph.D. from the University of California, Los Angeles, in 1960 after completing his undergraduate work at the University of California, Berkeley. He has received honorary degrees from universities in this country and throughout the world.

Dr. Valentin V. Vlassov
Russian Academy of Sciences

Valentin V. Vlassov (Co-Chair) Ph.D., D.Sci. (1947) is Vice President of the Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences since May 2008 and the Director of Institute of Chemical Biology and Fundamental Medicine of the Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences since 1996. He graduated from Novosibirsk State University (1969) and joined the Laboratory of Natural Biopolymers at the Institute of Organic Chemistry (SBRAS). The Laboratory has grown into the Institute of Bioorganic Chemistry (SBRAS) which was transformed to the Institute of Chemical Biology and Fundamental Medicine (SBRAS). He is a full member of Russian Academy of Sciences. His research interests include medical diagnostics and development of nucleic acid based therapeutics. He is the author of more than 300 publications in Russian and international journals.

Dr. Richard L. Witter
U.S. Department of Agriculture

Richard L. Witter, D.V.M., Ph.D. served as a veterinary medical officer with the U.S. Department of Agriculture-Agricultural Research Service (ARS) Avian Disease and Oncology Laboratory (ADOL) in East Lansing, Michigan, for 38 years (1964-2002). He currently serves as collaborator with the ADOL and as adjunct professor with the Department of Pathobiology and Clinical Investigations at Michigan State University. Dr. Witter helped develop the first successful vaccine in the United States against Marek’s disease and has documented the evolution of this virus to greater virulence. He has received numerous awards and recognition for his research. For more than 22 years, as director and research leader of ADOL, Dr. Witter administered a multidisciplinary research program on the biology of important avian viral neoplasms, as well as programs on recombinant DNA vaccines, immunogenetics, transgenic chickens, and genome mapping. He returned to the bench in 1998, where he pursued his personal research on Marek’s disease and avian leukosis until his retirement in 2002. He has been active in international activities involving grants programs in the Middle East and Central Asia. He helped initiate the ARS-Former Soviet Union Scientific Cooperation Program and has served as a scientific consultant to this program since its inception. Dr. Witter received his B.S. and D.V.M. from Michigan State University and his M.S. and Ph.D. from Cornell University. He was elected to membership in the National Academy of Sciences in 1998.

Dr. Russ Zajtchuk
Chicago Hospitals International

Russ Zajtchuk, a national expert in telemedicine, is currently president of Chicago Hospitals International. For more than 27 years, Dr. Zajtchuk served in various positions in the U.S. Army, most recently as commanding general of the Army Medical Research and Material Command at Fort Detrick, MD, where he led development of a sophisticated telecommunications infrastructure to speed diagnostics, lab analyses, and consulting expertise worldwide. Dr. Zajtchuk is a cardiovascular surgeon who was professor and chairman of the division of cardiothoracic surgery at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences. He also served as assistant surgeon general for research and development for the Department of the Army, and as chief operating officer for the Department of Defense telemedicine test-bed. Dr. Zajtchuk currently serves on the NRC Committee to Review Proposals from Former Soviet Biological Weapons Institutes and the NRC Committee on Counterterrorism Challenges for Russia and the United States and previously served on the NRC Committee on Future Contributions of the Biosciences to Public Health, Agriculture, Basic Research, Counter-terrorism, and Non-Proliferation Activities in Russia.

Dr. Sergey Zavriev
Russian Academy of Sciences

Sergey Zavriev, Ph.D is the Head of the Molecular Diagnostic Department at the Shemyakin & Ovchinnikov Institute of Bioorganic Chemistry at the Russian Academy of Sciences. His department research activities for the last 10 years have been aimed at investigating plant virus genome structure and expression, cloning and expression of virus specific genes, allergens and other proteins, their application for functional studies, producing antibodies against different recombinant antigens including allergens, development of technologies for PCR and RT-PCR-based detection of DNA- and RNA containing pathogens and correspondent diagnostic kits production. Dr. Zavriev was previously the Visiting Professor in the Department of Plant Pathology at the University of North Carolina and worked on plant molecular virology. He has been awarded several International Grants from INCO-Copernicus (1998) and INTAS (2001) together with the Sainsbury Laboratory, the Institute of Biotechnology of Helsinki University, the Federal Biological Research Centre for Agriculture and Forestry and the Institute for Plant Virology, Microbiology and Biosafety. Dr. Zavriev is a member of several international teams participating in the meetings and symposia on strategic study on bioterrorism and biosecurity problems. He is the author of more than 130 papers and patents.

Committee Membership Roster Comments
Alexander Zasedatelev is no longer on the committee. Sergey Zavriev has been added to the committee membership effective July 25, 2011.