SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Gary K. Michelson

The SABIN Vaccine Institute is making significant, impressive progress towards improving global health. Much of this progress has been made possible by the generous financial support of Dr. Gary K. Michelson through a number of initiatives including the Michelson Neglected Disease Vaccine Initiative, the NTD Special Envoy Program and the Soil-Transmitted Helminth (STH) Vaccine Discovery Program.

On March 25th 2015, renowned orthopedic spinal surgeon and inventor Dr. Gary K. Michelson was awarded the Albert B. Sabin Humanitarian Award by the SABIN Vaccine Institute in acknowledgement of the significant, continual financial contributions he has made to their research programs including the Michelson Neglected Disease Vaccine Initiative.

The SABIN Vaccine Institute, whose aim is to control the negative impact of tropical diseases (NTDs) and vaccine-preventable diseases by promoting the “development, delivery and distribution” of vaccines (1), has spoken of Dr Michelson’s “tremendous philanthropic efforts to control and eliminate NTDs” whilst praising the “generous investments” made which allowed the creation of multiple research programs.

Sabin Humanitarian Award | Research Programs singled out

Under the Michelson Neglected Disease Vaccine Initiative umbrella, three separate programs are aimed at eradicating NTDs.

One SABIN program currently underway, solely funded by Dr Gary K. Michelson, is aimed at developing a vaccine against the soil-transmitted infections ascariasis (roundworm) and trichuriasis (whipworm), which currently infect up to 1.2 billion and 800 million people, respectively.(2)(3)

Ascariasis (roundworm), Trichuriasis (whipworm); Sabin Humanitarian Award.

(Top) Ascariasis, or roundworm, is an intestinal parasitic infection and is part of a family of parasites known as the soil-transmitted helminths. It affects more than 1 billion people worldwide.
(Bottom) Trichuriasis, also in the family of soil-transmitted helminths, is an infection of the large intestine caused by the human whipworm. More than 800 million people are affected.

Ascariasis (roundworm), Trichuriasis (whipworm); Sabin Humanitarian Award.

(Top) Ascariasis, or roundworm, is an intestinal parasitic infection and is part of a family of parasites known as the soil-transmitted helminths. It affects more than 1 billion people worldwide.
(Bottom) Trichuriasis, also in the family of soil-transmitted helminths, is an infection of the large intestine caused by the human whipworm. More than 800 million people are affected.

Ascariasis (roundworm), Trichuriasis (whipworm); Sabin Humanitarian Award.

(Top) Ascariasis, or roundworm, is an intestinal parasitic infection and is part of a family of parasites known as the soil-transmitted helminths. It affects more than 1 billion people worldwide.
(Bottom) Trichuriasis, also in the family of soil-transmitted helminths, is an infection of the large intestine caused by the human whipworm. More than 800 million people are affected.

Ascariasis (roundworm), Trichuriasis (whipworm); Sabin Humanitarian Award.

(Top) Ascariasis, or roundworm, is an intestinal parasitic infection and is part of a family of parasites known as the soil-transmitted helminths. It affects more than 1 billion people worldwide.
(Bottom) Trichuriasis, also in the family of soil-transmitted helminths, is an infection of the large intestine caused by the human whipworm. More than 800 million people are affected.

Another important Gary K. Michelson funded SABIN initiative is the Michelson Fund for NTDs Global Awareness. With only 10% of global healthcare resources allocated towards combatting infections and diseases affecting 90% of the global population (4), this Special Envoy Program is a global advocacy scheme dedicated to encourage government bodies and funding organisations to direct resources towards the control, treatment and elimination of the most common neglected tropical diseases (NTDs).

The idea of aiding the most vulnerable and neglected populations is central to the work conducted by the SABIN Institute, with SABIN President Dr Peter J. Hotez frequently emphasizing the link between poverty and neglected tropical diseases (NTDs): “Today the poorest people living in our nation still suffer from a group of unique neglected diseases linked to extreme poverty.” [2014-01-08; Huffington Post] (5). Under the leadership of Dr Hotez, the SABIN Vaccine Institute is making breakthrough progress towards combatting many of these “diseases of poverty”. (5)

In September 2014, the Institute announced that Na-GST-1/Alhydrogel, a SABIN-developed potential vaccine for human hookworm, had passed Phase 1 clinical trials. (6) Alongside other parasitic worms, the human hookworm has been described by the CDC as accounting for a “major burden of disease worldwide” (7) and is known to infect up to 740 million individuals globally.

SABIN President Dr Peter J. Hotez claimed the Institution is “proud to pioneer developing and testing of the human hookworm vaccine” whilst expressing his commitment to the successful development and implementation of “lasting solutions” to the problem of hookworm and other NTDs. (8)

The SABIN Institute is also attempting to combat the growing spread of Chagas disease, a potentially fatal parasitic disease which primarily infects Latin American populations. (9) These efforts were bolstered in 2014 when the Institute received $2 million in funding from the Global Health Innovative Technology Fund (GHIT Fund) to “develop a new therapeutic vaccine formulation” for the disease. (10)

Chagas Disease (American Trypanosomiasis); Sabin Humanitarian Award.

Chagas Disease is spread by the parasite Trypanosoma cruzi. The disease primarily affects Latin American populations, however recent years have seen a rising number of cases in the US, particularly amongst poverty-stricken populations in southern states [image source: http://www.cdc.gov/parasites/chagas/].

Chagas Disease (American Trypanosomiasis); Sabin Humanitarian Award.

Chagas Disease is spread by the parasite Trypanosoma cruzi. The disease primarily affects Latin American populations, however recent years have seen a rising number of cases in the US, particularly amongst poverty-stricken populations in southern states [image source: http://www.cdc.gov/parasites/chagas/].

Chagas Disease (American Trypanosomiasis); Sabin Humanitarian Award.

Chagas Disease is spread by the parasite Trypanosoma cruzi. The disease primarily affects Latin American populations, however recent years have seen a rising number of cases in the US, particularly amongst poverty-stricken populations in southern states [image source: http://www.cdc.gov/parasites/chagas/].

Chagas Disease (American Trypanosomiasis); Sabin Humanitarian Award.

Chagas Disease is spread by the parasite Trypanosoma cruzi. The disease primarily affects Latin American populations, however recent years have seen a rising number of cases in the US, particularly amongst poverty-stricken populations in southern states [image source: http://www.cdc.gov/parasites/chagas/].

The SABIN Institute is clearly making remarkable progress in its mission to improve global health and ease human suffering. It is hoped that with the investments of Dr Gary K. Michelson this progress will continue, and the most vulnerable portions of humanity will soon directly benefit from the work being conducted.

SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015 Gallery (Photo Credit: Anna Grove)

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Guest Badges [18]

Guests Badges [18]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Award [31]

Albert B. Sabin Humanitarian Award [31]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Invitation [42]

Invitation [42]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Booklet [43]

Booklet [43]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Michael Walsh, Rosie Valdez McStay, Rebecca Marvil & Michael Marine [47]

Michael Walsh, Rosie Valdez McStay, Rebecca Marvil & Michael Marine. [47]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Mike Whitham, Maria Elena Bottazzi & Peter Thoren. [48]

Mike Whitham, Maria Elena Bottazzi & Peter Thoren. [48]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: The crowd assembles [51]

The crowd assembles. [51]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Gary Karlin Michelson & Neeraj Mistry [52]

Gary Karlin Michelson & Neeraj Mistry. [52]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Maria Elena Bottazzi & Michael Walsh [53]

Maria Elena Bottazzi & Michael Walsh. [53]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Peter Thoren & Michael Marine [54]

Peter Thoren & Michael Marine. [54]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Diana Gross & Rosie Valdez McStay [55]

Diana Gross & Rosie Valdez McStay. [55]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Alice Butrum & Herb Butrum [56]

Alice Butrum & Herb Butrum. [56]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Gary Karlin Michelson & Marc Shapiro [57]

Gary Karlin Michelson & Marc Shapiro. [57]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Brian Davis & Maria Elena Bottazzi [60]

Brian Davis & Maria Elena Bottazzi. [60]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Maria Elena Bottazzi & Philip Russell [64]

Maria Elena Bottazzi & Philip Russell. [64]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Peter Thoren, Marc Shapiro & Gary Karlin Michelson [65]

Peter Thoren, Marc Shapiro & Gary Karlin Michelson. [65]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Neeraj Mistry, Axel Hoos & Michael Marine; Peter Thoren, Ann Hotez, Peter Hotez, Gary Karlin Michelson & Maria Elena Bottazzi [68]

(Front to Camera) Neeraj Mistry, Axel Hoos & Michael Marine; (Back to Camera) Peter Thoren, Ann Hotez, Peter Hotez, Gary Karlin Michelson & Maria Elena Bottazzi. [68]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Peter Thoren, Ann Hotez, Peter Hotez, Gary Karlin Michelson & Maria Elena Bottazzi; Marc Shapiro, Michael Marine [69]

(Front to Camera) Peter Thoren, Ann Hotez, Peter Hotez, Gary Karlin Michelson & Maria Elena Bottazzi; (Back to Camera) Marc Shapiro, Michael Marine. [69]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Michael Marine, Axel Hoos & Neeraj Mistry; Peter Thoren, Ann Hotez, Peter Hotez, Gary Karlin Michelson & Maria Elena Bottazzi [70]

(Back to Camera) Michael Marine, Axel Hoos & Neeraj Mistry; (Front to Camera) Peter Thoren, Ann Hotez, Peter Hotez, Gary Karlin Michelson & Maria Elena Bottazzi. [70]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Gary Karlin Michelson & Maria Elena Bottazzi [72]

Gary Karlin Michelson & Maria Elena Bottazzi. [72]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Brian Davis & Jon Andrus; Rosie Valdez McStay, Michael Walsh & Brian Arenare [85]

(Back to Camera) Brian Davis, unknown guest & Jon Andrus; (Front to Camera) Rosie Valdez McStay, Michael Walsh & Brian Arenare. [85]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Vernesta Jackson, Bin Zhan & Oluwatoyin Ajibola Adojo [86]

Vernesta Jackson, Bin Zhan & Oluwatoyin Ajibola Adojo. [86]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Herb Butrum & Alice Butrum [87]

Herb Butrum & Alice Butrum. [87]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Maureen Merrifield & Diana Gross [90]

Maureen Merrifield & Diana Gross. [90]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Ann Hotez, Peter Hotez & Gary Karlin Michelson [91]

Ann Hotez, Peter Hotez & Gary Karlin Michelson. [91]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Peter Thoren, Ann Hotez, Peter Hotez, Gary Karlin Michelson & Maria Elena Bottazzi; Marc Shapiro & Michael Marine [94]

(Front to Camera) Peter Thoren, Ann Hotez, Peter Hotez, Gary Karlin Michelson & Maria Elena Bottazzi; (Back to Camera) Marc Shapiro & Michael Marine. [94]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Gary Karlin Michelson & Maria Elena Bottazzi [95]

Gary Karlin Michelson & Maria Elena Bottazzi. [95]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Peter Hotez & Gary Karlin Michelson [109]

Peter Hotez & Gary Karlin Michelson. [109]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Peter Hotez, Gary Karlin Michelson & Maria Elena Bottazzi [114]

Peter Hotez, Gary Karlin Michelson & Maria Elena Bottazzi. [114]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Peter Hotez, Gary Karlin Michelson & Maria Elena Bottazzi [138]

Peter Hotez, Gary Karlin Michelson & Maria Elena Bottazzi. [138]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Michael Marine, Peter Hotez, Gary Karlin Michelson, Axel Hoos & Neeraj Mistry [142]

Michael Marine, Peter Hotez, Gary Karlin Michelson, Axel Hoos & Neeraj Mistry. [142]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Paul Klotman, Peter Hotez, Gary Karlin Michelson & Cris Daskevich [144]

Paul Klotman, Peter Hotez, Gary Karlin Michelson & Cris Daskevich. [144]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Neeraj Mistry, Jon Andrus, Philip Russell, Brian Davis & Maria Elena Bottazzi [149]

Neeraj Mistry, Jon Andrus, Philip Russell, Brian Davis & Maria Elena Bottazzi. [149]

Gary K. Michelson; SABIN Humanitarian Award 2015: Mike Whitham, Phil Russell, Maria Elena Bottazzi, Peter Hotez, Brian Davis, Tara Hayward, Peter Thoren, Axel Hoos, Neeraj Mistry, Maureen Merrifield, Kimberly Vincent, Michael Marine, Salyna Meas & Jon Andrus [153]

(From Left to Right): Mike Whitham, Phil Russell, Maria Elena Bottazzi, Peter Hotez, Brian Davis, Tara Hayward, Peter Thoren, Axel Hoos, Neeraj Mistry, Maureen Merrifield, Kimberly Vincent, Michael Marine, Salyna Meas & Jon Andrus. [153]

References

  1. Sabin Vaccine Institute [Official]
  2. Ascaris and Ascariasis [2010-10-08; Christina Dold, Celia V. Holland, ScienceDirect]
  3. Parasites: Trichuriasis (Whipworm Infection) [Centers for Disease Control and Prevention]
  4. Closing the “10-90 Gap”: Neglected Disease Research at Baylor College of Medicine and Texas Children’s Hospital [2014-02-03; Dr. Peter J. Hotez, From The Labs, Baylor College of Medicine]
  5. America’s ‘New’ Diseases of Poverty [2014-01-08; Dr. Peter J. Hotez, Huffington Post]
  6. Phase 1 Clinical Trial of Human Hookworm Vaccine Successfully Completed [2014-09-03; Deborah Elson, SABIN Vaccine Institute]
  7. What is a Hookworm infection? [Amanda Delgado, George Krucik, MD, Healthline]
  8. Phase 1 Clinical Trial of Human Hookworm Vaccine Successfully Completed [2014-09-03; Deborah Elson, SABIN Vaccine Institute]
  9. Chagas disease (American trypanosomiasis) [2015-03; WHO Media Centre Fact Sheet N°340, WHO.org]
  10. Sabin Vaccine Institute Awarded Funding to Advance Therapeutic Vaccine Development for Chagas Disease [2014-09-16; Deborah Elson, SABIN Vaccine Institute]

Related Links

Christopher Edward Jones is a biochemist and writer currently affiliated with Queen Mary University of London, where he is part of a research group focusing on the restriction factors of HIV. In the past he has worked with multiple biomedical research groups in both industry and academia. He has a research interest in the biochemical mechanisms of virus restriction and a general interest in all areas of science.

Christopher Edward Jones is a biochemist and writer currently affiliated with Queen Mary University of London, where he is part of a research group focusing on the restriction factors of HIV. In the past he has worked with multiple biomedical research groups in both industry and academia. He has a research interest in the biochemical mechanisms of virus restriction and a general interest in all areas of science.

Christopher Edward Jones is a biochemist and writer currently affiliated with Queen Mary University of London, where he is part of a research group focusing on the restriction factors of HIV. In the past he has worked with multiple biomedical research groups in both industry and academia. He has a research interest in the biochemical mechanisms of virus restriction and a general interest in all areas of science.

Christopher Edward Jones is a biochemist and writer currently affiliated with Queen Mary University of London, where he is part of a research group focusing on the restriction factors of HIV. In the past he has worked with multiple biomedical research groups in both industry and academia. He has a research interest in the biochemical mechanisms of virus restriction and a general interest in all areas of science.