Plenary and Keynote Speakers


Louis Lambrechts Ph.D.

Louis Lambrechts, PhD, HDR, Research, Department of Virology, Institut Pasteur, Paris, France.

Bio: Dr. Louis Lambrechts is a Research Director in the Department of Virology at Institut Pasteur in Paris, where he heads the Insect-Virus Interactions Research Unit. After graduating from Ecole Normale Supérieure in Paris, he obtained a PhD in Ecology in 2006 for his work on interactions between mosquitoes and malaria parasites at University Pierre & Marie Curie in Paris. During his postdoc, he was supported by a European Marie Curie fellowship to study interactions between mosquitoes and dengue viruses at the University of California in Davis and in the Laboratory of Genetics and Evolution of Infectious Diseases in Montpellier, France. In 2010, he joined the Institut Pasteur in Paris where he became a Research Scientist of the French Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS) in 2011, a Junior Group Leader in 2013, and Unit Head in 2019. To date, he has authored over 80 scientific publications. He was awarded a CNRS Bronze Medal in 2018 and the Pasteur Vallery-Radot Prize in 2020. He is currently involved in several international research programs on dengue and Zika.

Flaminia Catteruccia, Ph.D.

Flaminia Catteruccia, PhD, Professor, Department of Immunology and Infectious Diseases, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

Bio: Associate Professor of Immunology and Infectious Diseases at the Harvard School of Public Health, Flaminia Catteruccia is a molecular entomologist specializing in the reproductive biology of Anopheles mosquitoes, the only mosquitoes capable of transmitting human malaria. She is exploring how disruptions to the mosquito mating process could hinder reproduction. Her work has received funding from the European Research Council, Wellcome Trust and Medical Research Council and has appeared in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Nature Biotechnology and PLoS Biology. Her focus on the reproductive biology of mosquitoes seeks keys to fighting a disease that still affects hundreds of millions of people around the world.

Michael Povelones, PhD

Michael Povelones, PhD. Assistant Professor, Pathobiology, University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine.

Assistant Professor Povelones focuses on the molecular and cellular interactions between vector mosquitoes and the human and animal parasites they transmit. His lab use different infection models to understand on a mechanistic level how distinct parasites are recognized and killed by the mosquito and have established infection models for Anopheles and human and rodent Plasmodium, Aedes and Anopheles with kinetoplastid parasite Crithidia fasciculata, and different species and strains of Aedes with the agents of human lymphatic filariasis Brugia malayi and canine heartworm Dirofilaria immitis. He has been fascinated how filarial nematodes such as B. malayi and D. immitis migrate to specific tissues, enter cells, and evade potent extra- and intracellular mosquito immune responses. His lab has developed a novel method for assaying mosquito transmission potential of D. immitis and B. malayi. Using a combination of transcriptomics and gene knockdown his lab has shown that the mosquito immune response is activated by infection and can restrict parasite development. Many important questions remain, and his lab is excited to use new methods to unravel the molecular mechanisms of immune activation during filarial infection, to discover what mosquito proteins interact with and restrict these parasitic nematodes, and to identify specific cellular responses of the different tissues where filariae reside.

Elodie Ghedin, Ph.D.

Elodie Gedhin, PhD. Chief, Systems Genomics Section, Laboratory of Parasitic Diseases, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious diseases.

Bio: Elodie Ghedin, PhD leads the Systems Genomics Section at the Laboratory of Parasitic Diseases of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland since May 2020. She also holds an affiliation with New York University where she was Director of the Center for Genomics and Systems Biology and Professor of Biology and Global Public Health. Her laboratory uses comparative genomics, evolutionary biology, and systems biology techniques to generate critical insight about host-pathogen interactions. Dr. Ghedin studies microbial and viral population structures, and how these impact host response to infection and emerging infectious diseases. Her research focuses on characterizing virus diversity—primarily influenza, and now SARS-CoV-2—within and across infected hosts, and the interactions of microbes (bacterial, fungal, and viral) in the respiratory tract, to better understand the dynamics of virus transmission.

Dr. Ghedin obtained her BSc and PhD from McGill University in Montreal, Canada. She is a MacArthur Foundation Fellow (2011), a Kavli Frontier of Science Fellow (2012), and an American Academy of Microbiology Fellow (2017).



Anthony A. James, PhD.

Anthony A. James, PhD, Donald Bren Professor, Microbiology & Molecular Genetics School of Medicine and School of Biological Sciences, University of California, Irvine.

Bio: Anthony A. James is Distinguished Professor of Microbiology & Molecular Genetics (School of Medicine) and Molecular Biology & Biochemistry (School of Biological Sciences) at the University of California, Irvine (UCI). He is a member of the NAS. Dr. James received his Bachelor of Science and Ph.D. degrees at UCI. He went to Boston in 1979 for postdoctoral work at Harvard Medical School and Brandeis University and joined the faculty at the Harvard School of Public Health in 1985. He returned to his alma mater in 1989. Dr. James is working on vector-parasite interactions, mosquito molecular biology, and other problems in insect developmental biology. His research emphasizes the use of genetic and molecular-genetic tools to develop synthetic approaches to interrupting pathogen transmission by mosquitoes. His research group was the first to develop routine transgenesis procedures for mosquitoes, and they have been able to engineer single-chain antibodies that interfere with malaria parasite development in mosquitoes. He is collaborating with other researchers to develop RNAi-mediated approaches to prevent dengue virus transmission and an Aedes aegypti population-suppression strain based on flightless females. He also is using bioinformatics to study the evolution of control DNA involved in regulating genes connected with hematophagy. Dr. James has a strong interest in what it takes to move science from the laboratory to the field. He is the principal investigator on multiple grants from the NIH and, in 2005, received an award from the Grand Challenges in Global Health initiative to develop genetic strategies for control of dengue virus transmission. The Burroughs-Wellcome Fund and the MacArthur Foundation have also supported his research. In addition to being elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 2006, Dr. James has received numerous other awards, including the Nan-Yao Su (2009) Award for Innovation and Creativity in Entomology from the Entomological Society of America. He was a co-recipient of the Premio de Investgación Médica Dr. Jorge Rosenkranz (2008) and a recipient of the Burroughs-Wellcome New Initiatives in Malaria Award (2000) and the Burroughs-Wellcome Scholar Award in Molecular Parasitology (1994). In 2009, he received the UCI Medal, the highest honor the University bestows on an individual who has made exceptional contributions to the vision, mission and spirit of UCI, and in 2013 the UCI School of Medicine awarded him the Athalie Clarke Achievement Award for Outstanding Research. . Dr. James was named a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (1994); a Fellow of the Royal Entomological Society of London (1992); a Fellow of the Entomological Society of America (2011); and a Fellow of the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (2012). In 2009, he was awarded the UCI Medal, the highest honor the University bestows on an individual who has made exceptional contributions to the vision, mission and spirit of UCI. He has published over 200 papers, reviews and policy documents and has provided guidance to graduate students and postdoctoral fellows. He was a founding editor of the journal Insect Molecular Biology and has served on the editorial boards of PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases, Experimental Parasitology, and Entomological Research. He is a member of the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, American Committee on Vector Entomology, American Association for the Advancement of Science, American Society of Parasitology, Royal Entomological Society, Entomological Society of America, Genetics Society of America and Society of Vector Ecology. Additional Information Profile from University of California, Irvine Interview with A.A. James. Vector-Borne and Zoonotic Diseases. February 2009, 9(1): 127-130 "Most Influential 2015: Anthony James," The Orange County Register.

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