President’s Excellence Award winner: Howard Gendelman, MD

Howard Gendelman, MD

Howard Gendelman, MD, is the winner of the University of Nebraska’s inaugural Faculty IP Innovation and Commercialization Award (FIPICA).

The award recognizes faculty members who have developed and nurtured significant new intellectual property from concept to licensing/startup business. In his UNMC career, Dr. Gendelman has patented more than 200 new inventions and is moving to or already has begun several Phase I-II studies.

Dr. Gendelman, the Margaret R. Larson Professor of Internal Medicine and Infectious Diseases and chair of the UNMC Department of Pharmacology and Experimental Neuroscience, certainly fits that bill. 

Such success, however, never occurs in a vacuum and never is the result of a single person. “The principal partnerships amongst Drs. Benson Edagwa, R. Lee Mosley, Bhavesh Kevadiya and Jatin Machhi are shared, as each were instrumental in reaching this important milestone and acknowledged so freely,” Dr. Gendelman said.

With more than 580 publications, holder of 138 patents, an H-index of 115, editor or editor-in-chief of 12 textbooks and the research journal “NeuroImmune Pharmacology and Therapeutics” and co-founder of two biotechnology companies with a third now in development, Dr. Gendelman clearly has been a top innovator.

Still, he is not much concerned with awards.

“It’s all about the science and the team,” he said. “We are working here at UNMC to treat, prevent, diagnose and some day potentially eliminate chronic infectious and neurodegenerative diseases – and we are making real strides.”

Dr. Gendelman also recently received a seventh competitive renewal on a National Institutes of Health/National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke R01 grant – a grant that will be active 33 years, making it the longest continually funded grant of its kind for any UNMC researcher. The new awardcontinues a research program that investigates the interplay between aging, HIV-1 infection and neurodegenerative diseases. The grant reviewers noted impressive productivity and many significant contributions to the field throughout Dr. Gendelman’s more than 40-year career

For a researcher unconcerned with awards, Dr. Gendelman has racked up a shelf of them. He has received a National Institutes of Health Merit Award, NU’s Outstanding Research and Creative Activity Award, was named a UNMC scientist laureate and received community humanitarian and lifesaver awards. Amongst his other honors are the Henry L. Moses Award in Basic Science, the Carter-Wallace Fellow for Distinction in AIDS Research, a Pioneer of Neurovirology and a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Society on NeuroImmune Pharmacology, where he currently is president-elect.

He and his team, which includes Pravin Yeapuri, Katherine Olson, PhD, Yaman Lu, Mai Abdelmoaty, PhD, Lee Mosley, PhD, and Jatin Machhi, PhD, will shortly publish papers that he said will be turning points in changing the way new therapeutics are developed for Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. They are only the latest in the research advances for Dr. Gendelman and the many that work with him side by side.

“Dr. Gendelman is a true friend and a much-appreciated collaborator,” said Benson Edagwa, PhD, an associate professor in the department, Dr. Gendelman’s close collaborator and one of his co-founders in Exavir Therapeutics, a company they founded with Alborz Yazdi to build commercially on the academic research breakthroughs they continue to achieve. “His vision has led to real advances in the field.”

“What’s really great about doing biomedical research is not simply doing the work and publishing papers and getting grants,” Dr. Gendelman said. “The greatest success is being able to build as a team in which I am one of many, then translate those efforts into something that is meaningful, not only for the patients you’re seeing on a day-to-day, but ultimately for the world.”

Robert Gallo, MD, an internationally known pioneer in AIDS and HIV research, has said: “Howard Gendelman and his colleagues at the University of Nebraska Medical Center have been doing forefront research on future HIV therapy. I know of no more rational and no better approach than he and his team have advanced.”

Dr. Gendelman, who joined UNMC in 1994, earned his bachelor’s degree in Natural Sciences and Russian studies with honors from Muhlenberg College. He earned his MD at Pennsylvania State University, where he is recognized as a distinguished alumnus. He completed his residency in internal medicine at Montefiore Hospital, Albert Einstein College of Medicine and a clinical and research fellow in Infectious Diseases and Neurology at the Johns Hopkins University Medical Center. He has held faculty positions at Hopkins and the University Services University of the Health Sciences and retired from the U.S. Army with the rank of lieutenant colonel.

Dr. Gendelman said all that was accomplished is the result of so many others working together with common purpose and determination.

“None of this could happen without that,” Dr. Gendelman said.


  1. Karoly Mirnics says:

    Congratulations Howie, very much deserved!

  2. Carol Russell says:

    CONGRATULATIONS!! You have done amazing work for years. Thank you for your knowledge and perserverance.
    Carol Russell

  3. Melissa Mellon says:

    Congrats Dr. G!!

  4. Clarence Ueda says:

    Recognition and honor very much well deserved. Congratulation, Dr. Gendelman

  5. Natalia Osna says:


  6. Sid Byrareddy says:

    Congratulations, Dr. G, for your continued success; this honor is well deserved.

  7. Stacie Hamel says:

    Congratulations, Dr. Gendelman!

  8. Prasanta Dash says:

    Many Congratulations Dr. G.

  9. Ashok Mudgapalli says:

    Congratulations 🙂 Well deserved award.

  10. Keith D. Swarts says:

    Congratulations Dr. Gendelman. You are truly a pioneer. Making this world a better place for all!

  11. Huangui Xiong says:

    Congratulations Dr. G, very much deserved!

  12. Charles H Maris says:

    How wonderful, and well deserved.

  13. Jawed Siddiqui says:


  14. Donald Leuenberger says:

    Howie, so well deserved and so much more to come. Congratulations!

  15. Harold Schultz, Ph.D. says:

    Congratulations Howard!

  16. Tom O’Connor says:

    U da’ man, Howie – the best of the best at UNMC!

    1. Howard Gendelman says:

      You gals and guys just make me cry with all congratulations offered and kind words. Thank you and thank you so much for traveling this journey together. My prayer to all is the someday the name attached to the University Medical Center will be permanently replaced with a new name. That new name is the Nebraska Miracle Center. Something to look forward to for a shared road ahead.

  17. Dhruv Soni says:

    Heartiest congratulations, Dr. Gendelman.

  18. Jonathan L. Vennerstrom says:

    Many congratulations to you and your team – well done!

  19. Sandy Goodman says:

    Congratulations! It was a privilege to get to know you.

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