UNMC scientists honored for neurovirology impact

by Lisa Spellman, UNMC public relations | November 21, 2016

Image with caption: From left, Kamel Khalili, Ph.D., professor and chair of the department of neuroscience at the Lewis Katz School of Medicine at Temple University in Philadelphia, Dr. Gendelman, and Igor Koralnik, M.D., president of the International Society of NeuroVirology and chair of the department of neurological sciences at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago, Ill.

From left, Kamel Khalili, Ph.D., professor and chair of the department of neuroscience at the Lewis Katz School of Medicine at Temple University in Philadelphia, Dr. Gendelman, and Igor Koralnik, M.D., president of the International Society of NeuroVirology and chair of the department of neurological sciences at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago, Ill.

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From left, Mahendra Kumar, Ph.D., a professor of psychoneuroendocrinology at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine in Miami, Fla., Dr. Buch, and Joan Berman, Ph.D., chair of the Women in Neurovirology Committee with the ISNV and a professor at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in Bronx, N.Y.
Two UNMC scientists received top honors at the International Symposium of Neurovirology held last month in Toronto, Canada.

Howard Gendelman, M.D., chairman of the department of pharmacology and experimental neuroscience, received the Pioneer in NeuroVirology Award, and Shilpa Buch, Ph.D., professor of pharmacology and experimental neuroscience and director of the Nebraska Center for Substance Abuse Research, received the Woman in Neuroscience Lectureship and Award.

The Pioneer in NeuroVirology Award is presented in recognition of outstanding individual achievement in the field of neurovirology. Pioneers in NeuroVirology have been recognized by the International Society for NeuroVirology (ISNV) since 1999.

"The outstanding contributions of Dr. Gendelman for more than 30 years in the field of neurovirology, particularly neuroAIDS as it relates to the role of immune cells and macrophages, has helped many investigators across the world to direct their efforts on deciphering molecular mechanisms of virus-induced CNS (central nervous system) disease and developing more effective and safe therapeutic strategies to treat this disease," said Kamel Khalili, Ph.D., professor and chair of the department of neuroscience at the Lewis Katz School of Medicine at Temple University.

At the presentation of the award, Dr. Gendelman's daughter Sierra Gendelman Tobias, gave an emotional speech highlighting her father's career.

Describing her father as a visionary, Tobias said, "He has fought tirelessly for his patients to find discoveries to combat serious and often life threatening medical ailments -- his research offers hope to so many that cannot fight for themselves. His scientific discoveries are an unimaginable gift to society and the world. He has expanded a wealth of data and enriched our knowledge."

The Women in Neuroscience Lectureship and Award is sponsored by the Women in NeuroVirology Committee, which is part of the governance of ISNV.

The purpose of the lectureship is to emphasize and celebrate the major contributions of outstanding women toward the advancement of biomedical science and, in particular, neurovirology and related disciplines. The lectureship was initiated in 2006.

"An extraordinary scientist," is how Joan Berman, Ph.D., a professor at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in Bronx, N.Y., described Dr. Buch. "She conducts herself and her work with the utmost of integrity, grace and humility, and is just as thrilled with the accomplishments of her mentees as she is with her own."

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Sonja McCollister
November 21, 2016 at 11:28 AM

Recognition well deserved, Howie! Sonja McCollister

Carol Russellc
November 21, 2016 at 7:22 AM

Congratulations Howie!! Carol Russell