Faculty & Staff

Geisel School of Medicine

Charles Wira, Ph. D.
Dr. Wira will serve as a senior faculty member with responsibility for selection and mentoring of trainees in laboratory and basic science degrees and programs. Dr. Wira is Professor of Physiology and Principal Investigator for the NIH Program Project on Mucosal Immunity in the Reproductive Tract. His investigations have focused on how female sex hormones influence mucosal immunity in the female reproductive tract. He has shown that levels of IgA and IgG antibodies that respond to antigens as part of the mucosal immune system in the female genital tract, are regulated by sex hormones, and that the levels vary depending on the stage of the reproductive cycle. He also found that intrauterine immunization can result in a pronounced antibody immune response within the uterine tract. These studies have important implications in both the protection against and the control of infections by virus and bacteria. The Program Project is designed to increase the presently limited knowledge of innate and adaptive immune protection systemically in men and women and at mucosal surfaces of the human female reproductive tract. These studies should provide critical data for prevention of local infection in the genital mucosa, for management of sexually transmitted diseases, and for understanding the heterosexual transmission of HIV.

John F. Modlin, M.D.
Dr. Modlin will serve as a senior faculty member and mentor for trainees in vaccine trials and vaccine policy research. He is Professor of Medicine and Pediatrics, and Chairman, Department of Pediatrics. Dr. Modlin has extensive experience in HIV and with vaccine research and policy. He has served as Chairman of the United States Public Health Service Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices since 1997 and during 2002 led that Committee's efforts in developing guidelines for the use of smallpox vaccine in the United States. He was a member and then Chairman of the FDA Antiviral Drugs Advisory Committee for three years and led hearings on licensure of numerous antiretroviral agents. Dr. Modlin served as Co-Chair of the Pediatric ACTG and is currently a member of the Therapeutic Trials Data and Safety Monitoring Board NIAID, a Board which has responsibility for NIH/DAIDS trials of candidate HIV vaccines. He has been the recipient of the Pediatric Clinical Teaching Award at both Johns Hopkins and DMS.

Randolph Noelle, Ph. D.
Dr. Noelle will serve as a senior faculty member and mentor for trainees in Immunology. Dr. Noelle is Professor in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Director of the Immunology Program and Deputy Director of the Norris Cotton Cancer Center. In 1991, Dr. Noelle's laboratory identified a novel membrane protein expressed on helper T lymphocytes (Th), CD154. This ligand, and its receptor, CD40 play a central role in regulating the development of both humoral and cell-mediated immunity. Dr. Noelle is currently the PI on 5 major NIH awards (including AI 26296, 48667, 52211). He is the newly appointed Director of the Dartmouth Immunotherapy Center which will bring together basic scientists and clinical investigators in the development of novel immune-based approaches to prevention and treatment of infectious diseases and cancer. Dr. Noelle has extensive experience in mentoring Ph. D and other degree students and teaches basic and advanced immunology and to doctoral students in the combined program in Molecular and Cellular Biology.

Gerald T. O'Connor, Ph.D., D.Sc.
Dr. O'Connor will serve as a senior faculty member and mentor for trainees in epidemiology and for MPH candidates. Dr. O'Connor is Professor of Medicine and of Community and Family Medicine, Chief of Clinical Research in the Department of Medicine and Director of Education Programs at the Center for the Evaluative Clinical Sciences. Faculty at the Center and in the Department of Community and Family Medicine, including Dr. O'Connor, hold over $28 million in current research support including numerous NIH sponsored studies. Dr. O'Connor has served as principal epidemiologist for two NIH sponsored studies on the international epidemiology of mycobacterial infections in HIV including site visits to Africa. He has extensive experience teaching epidemiology and clinical trials design in graduate programs. He is also a Lecturer on Medicine at Harvard Medical School. His primary interests are risk prediction, decision support and process improvement in clinical care.

Bernard Cole, Ph. D.
Dr. Cole will serve a senior faculty member and mentor for trainees in biostatistics. Dr. Cole is Associate Professor of Community and Family Medicine (Biostatistics), Section of Biostatistics and Epidemiology, Department of Community and Family Medicine, and is Director of the Biostatistics Shared Resource at the Norris Cotton Cancer Center. He is the principal statistician for the DARDAR Health Study. His methodological research has focused on the problem of jointly evaluating quality of life and survival in clinical trials. Dr. Cole is currently the lead statistician for two additional major phase III clinical trials, and several early-phase treatment trials. He is a primary statistical consultant in the Polyps Prevention Group headed by Dr. John Baron, responsible for the design and analysis of large-scale randomized chemo-prevention studies for colorectal cancer. This group published results in March 2003 demonstrating the benefits of aspirin in the prevention of colonic polyps. Dr. Cole is an active teacher in the fields of biostatistics, epidemiology and clinical trial methodology at DMS and its graduate programs.

Elizabeth Talbot, M.D.
Dr. Talbot will serve as a senior faculty member and mentor for trainees in tuberculosis and HIV clinical trials and policy and for general skills in grant writing. Dr. Talbot is currently Associate Director, CDC Division of Tuberculosis Elimination, HIV/TB BOTUSA Project, Botswana and will join the Dartmouth Infectious Disease Section in June 2003 as Assistant Professor of Medicine. Dr. Talbot is a member of the World Health Organization HIV/TB working group and has directed numerous epidemiologic studies of tuberculosis and HIV for CDC in Botswana. She has published widely on BCG, and on tuberculosis and HIV infection in Africa.

Richard Waddell, D.Sc.
Dr. Waddell will coordinate training activities on bioinformatics, regulatory and ethical issues in clinical trial designs, and short-term courses conducted in conjunction with the AETC/NH and will serve as a member and secretary of the DBU Fogarty Executive Committee. Dr. Waddell is Assistant Professor of Medicine and Program Director and Principal Investigator for the AIDS Education and Training Center for New Hampshire (AETC). Dr. Waddell has extensive experience with HIV and tuberculosis research in sub-Saharan Africa including studies in Zambia and Tanzania. He is also a co-investigator for the DARDAR Health Study in Tanzania. Dr. Waddell has also served as a mentor and faculty advisor for DMS students through the Dartmouth International Health Group. These summer internships have included work in Ghana, Cameroon (2), Zambia (2), and Tanzania (2).

Alexandra L. Howell, Ph.D.
Dr. Howell will provide training in HIV laboratory methods and in methods for assessing mucosal immune responses. She is Director of the HIV Core Research Facility and is Research Associate Professor in the Departments of Medicine and Microbiology/Immunology. Her current research interests include defining the mechanisms by which HIV-1 infects women following heterosexual transmission. For these studies, cells and tissues from the female reproductive tract are obtained from women undergoing hysterectomy and are used in vitro assays to determine mechanisms of viral binding, replication, and transmission. Dr. Howell is also defining ways to augment immune responses to HIV-1 vaccine antigens by the study of targeted vaccines. Training programs will include research on HIV infection of cells and tissues from the female reproductive tract, defining innate mechanisms of anti-viral activity within the female reproductive tract, and understanding the mechanism of cell-to-cell spread of HIV within the female reproductive tract.

Lisa Adams, M.D.
Dr. Adams will provide training in TB surveillance, evaluation, data collection and validation/quality control, and HIV/TB co-infection. She will serve on the Publications Committee for the present proposal and will have responsibility for providing regular support to all trainees in scientific writing and presentation, and will match trainees with other faculty for specialty support in scientific writing. She will also be a member of the DBU Executive Committee. Dr. Adams is Instructor in the Department of Community and Family Medicine and has domestic and international expertise in TB surveillance, program management and evaluation, and clinical management of tuberculosis. She is the former Director of Surveillance for the New York City Tuberculosis Control Program and has worked in tuberculosis care and control in Kibondo, Tanzania, South Africa, and most recently in Kosovo.

Fred Pond, M.L.S.
Mr. Pond will serve as a faculty member in informatics for trainees in the Program. Mr. Pond is a librarian and experienced trainer for Internet-based biomedical literature databases and has had extensive experience teaching basic scientists and clinicians the use of essential research software. Courses have included: MEDLINE, Effective Methods for Searching the Internet, Searching Full-text Journals and Textbooks, EndNote, Personal Data Assistants (PDAs), and Powerpoint. Mr. Pond has been involved in international training and development of informatics in several resource poor regions. He has made site visits to the Republic of Karelia, Russia to provide workshops and demonstrations on medical databases that can be accessed from the Internet and has traveled to the University of Prishtina in Kosovo to develop a plan for introducing a digital library in support of medical education for students, faculty, and staff.

Boston University Schools of Medicine and Public Health

Paul R. Skolnik, M.D.
Dr. Skolnik will serve as a senior faculty member in HIV clinical trials and HIV molecular epidemiology. Dr. Skolnik is Professor of Medicine with a secondary appointment in the Department of Microbiology at BU School of Medicine. He is the Director of the Center for HIV/AIDS Care and Research at BUMC. He serves on the Immunology Research Agenda Committee (RAC) of the ACTG, and is a member of the Metabolic Subcommittee of the Complications RAC of the ACTG. Dr. Skolnik has carried out many clinical trials of investigational new immunotherapeutic and antiretroviral drug therapies for HIV infection. He was a co-investigator of clinical trials of IL-10 and IL-12 therapy for HIV infection, and more recently was a co-investigator for a trial of pegylated interferon for HIV treatment. He has conducted numerous phase I, II, and III trials of investigational antiretroviral therapies, and has served as protocol virologist for several of these protocols. He has served as a faculty member in the Tufts/Brown AITRP. Dr. Skolnik is the Co-director of the Boston University Clinical HIV/AIDS Research Training Program. He also has extensive experience in mentoring MD and non-MD clinical research trainees.

John Bernardo, M.D.
Dr. Bernardo will serve as a senior faculty member in tuberculosis clinical trials. He is Professor of Medicine at Boston University School of Medicine and Tuberculosis control officer for the State of Massachusetts. Dr. Bernardo has conducted clinical and basic research on the treatment of tuberculosis and the human immune response to tuberculosis infection and disease. He was the recipient of a TB academic award from the NHLBI and is currently the Principal Investigator for the Boston Unit of the CDC-funded Tuberculosis Trials Consortium. In addition, he is the Principal Investigator of a CDC-funded study to determine the utility of in vitro lymphocyte (QUANTIferon) testing for the diagnosis of Tuberculosis infection and disease. Dr. Bernardo was also a member of the Boston University Medical Center Institutional Review Board from 1988-2001 and its chair from 1996-2001.

Richard O. Laing, MD, MBChB.
Dr. Laing will serve as a senior faculty member on international issues in HIV and tuberculosis drug availability and delivery. He is Associate Professor of International Health at BUSPH. He works closely with WHO, serving on Expert and Advisory Committees and as a consultant. He has worked for over 20 years in the field of health pharmaceuticals, management, and quality assurance in Zimbabwe and other African and Asian countries. Dr Laing serves on the WHO Expert Committee on National Drug Policies and on the Expert Committee on the selection of essential Medicines, and has been a member of a number of ad hoc or WHO Technical Advisory Committees on topics such as Tuberculosis Technical Research Advisory Committee, Fixed Dose TB drug group, antimicrobial resistance working group, pharmacy curriculum development meetings in Zimbabwe (AFRO) and Lebanon (EMRO), Hague FIP/WHO self medication meeting, AIDS and HIV management in low income countries. He previously worked as a full-time consultant in international health with Management Sciences for Health (MSH). His work there included assessing the total costs of AIDS in African countries, developing training programs in Malawi, and teaching courses in Management Skills in Child Survival, District Level Management, and Managing Drug Supply at MSH's Boston headquarters. The major area for Dr. Laing's activities at MSH was coordinating drug use activities for the International Network for Rational Use of Drugs (INRUD).

Seth L. Welles, Sc.D., Ph.D.
Dr. Welles will serve as a senior faculty member in the area of behavioral intervention for the prevention of both HIV and tuberculosis. Dr. Welles is Associate Professor of Epidemiology at BUSPH. He has focused his research in two areas: 1) the molecular epidemiology of HIV-1 antiretroviral resistance and its impact on disease progression and vertical transmission (NIH RO1-AI39144); and 2) community-based studies of HIV-1 and STD infections among sexual minorities, including MSM and lesbians. Dr. Welles is PI of the NIH-funded study of HIV-1 antiretroviral resistance and mother-infant transmission. Dr. Welles is also collaborating on a study of viral and immunologic correlates of mother to child transmission of HIV-1 clade C in a cohort of pregnant women in Botswana, and is Director of the Community Partnership against HIV, a collaboration with community-based organizations in the black community of Boston to raise awareness of and increase serologic testing for HIV/AIDS.

Other Collaborating Faculty

Calvin J. Cohen, M.D., M.Sc.
Dr. Cohen will serve as a collaborating faculty member in the area of HIV clinical trials and pharmacologic issues in HIV therapy. He is Clinical Instructor at Harvard Medical School in Boston. In addition, he is Staff Physician at Brigham and Women's Hospital and is Research Director of Harvard Vanguard Medical Associates and Community Research Initiative of New England. Dr. Cohen's research interests include the study and antiviral treatment of HIV, AIDS, and related topics. In addition to his clinical and research role, he is currently a Co-principal Investigator of the New England AIDS Education and Training Center, and is a member of the Science Planning Council for the Community Program for Clinical Research on AIDS (CPCRA), an NIH supported network of clinician-researchers. He has authored and co-authored numerous articles concerning HIV, AIDS, and related topics.

Jenni Vuola, Ph. D.
Dr. Vuola will serve as a collaborating faculty member in vaccine immunology. Dr. Vuola has led a vaccine research group since 1997 at the Vaccine Development Laboratory at the National Public Health Institute (KTL), Helsinki, Finland where she serves as Senior Scientist. Her main research interest is identification of novel methods for inducing and detecting cellular immune responses. Her research group uses a pre-clinical Chlamydia pneumoniae mouse model to assess the basic principles and extrapolates this information to clinical vaccine trials. Dr. Vuola was the principal immunologist for a trial of inactivated Mycobacterium vaccae vaccine conducted among HIV positive subjects in Finland, and is the principal immunologist for the DARDAR Health Study in Tanzania. Dr. Vuola recently completed a sabbatical as a Senior Immunologist in the Malaria Vaccine Trials Laboratory of Sir Adrian Hill at Oxford University, UK.

Hanna Soini, Ph. D.
Dr. Soini will serve as a collaborating faculty member in mycobacterial diagnostics and molecular epidemiology. She is Director of the National Mycobacterial Reference Laboratory, National Public Health Institute of Finland. She has published widely on molecular methods for strain typing of M. tuberculosis and on antibiotic susceptibility typing. Her laboratory is responsible for all reference level testing of M. tuberculosis isolates in Finland. She has provided training to scientists from numerous countries, including Russia, on these techniques. She will provide similar training to Tanzanian scientists to increase the capacity of the Tanzanian National Reference Laboratory to support research studies in tuberculosis.

Program Staff

Susan Gregg, Administrative Assistant, Dartmouth Medical School

Heidi Miller, Academic Coordinator, Boston University

Joyce Nyambelwa, Administrative Officer, Muhimbili University College of Health Sciences

Kim Mwamelo

Kim Mwamelo

Kim Mwamelo, MPH '17, leads the TDI graduation procession at Dartmouth's Commencement ceremony.