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International research group recognizes UTMB experts
Date:4/15/2014

GALVESTON, Texas The global experts who study the deadliest infectious diseases recognized the contributions of Frederick A. Murphy and Thomas G. Ksiazek, professors at the University of Texas Medical Branch, with a Lifetime Achievement Award at the 6th annual International Symposium on Filoviruses. The filoviruses include Ebola and Marburg viruses that cause death in 50 to 90 percent of people infected. The current outbreak of Ebola virus raging in West Africa has caused more than 100 deaths so far.

"This award represents the culmination of a lifetime of scientific discovery and leadership in addressing one of the most challenging emerging diseases of our time," said James LeDuc, director of the Galveston National Laboratory at UTMB, the only fully operational Biosafety Level 4 laboratory on an academic campus in the United States.

Murphy was the co-discoverer of this group of deadly viruses and prepared the first electron micrograph showing the curled thread-like image of the virus particles that characterize the filoviruses. Ksiazek has personally led the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's on-site response to virtually every Ebola or Marburg outbreak that has occurred in Africa since the 1995 Kikwit outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Together they provided critical insights about the viruses and how to control the devastating outbreaks that they cause.

Murphy is a professor of pathology and a member of the Institute for Human Infections and Immunity, the Center for Biodefense and Emerging infectious Diseases, the Galveston National Laboratory and the McLaughlin Endowment for Infection and Immunity.

Prior to his arrival at UTMB in 2005, he served in a number of prominent positions at the CDC, concluding his career as director of the National Center for Infectious Diseases. One of his unique contributions to infectious disease research and public awareness are a series of images of deadly vi
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Contact: Maureen Balleza
maballez@utmb.edu
409-772-8785
University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston
Source:Eurekalert

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