Georgetown University

06/04/2024 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 06/04/2024 19:35

Georgetown University Subject Matter Experts for H5N1 Bird Flu

WASHINGTON -According to the CDC, H5N1 bird flu is widespread in wild birds worldwide and is causing outbreaks in poultry and U.S. dairy cows with several recent human cases in U.S. dairy workers. Georgetown University faculty offer their expertise to journalists seeking interviews.

To request to schedule an interview, please contact Georgetown's Office of Communications at [email protected].


Shweta Bansal,professor of biology and faculty in the Global Infectious Diseases PhD Program, Biology PhD Program, Massive Data Institute, the Global Health Institute and Earth Commons

Dr. Bansal is an expert in mathematical epidemiology, disease ecology, and network science that has garnered widespread recognition for its practical applications in public health. Her work often involves leveraging large-scale datasets and advances computational techniques to understand disease dynamics and inform public health and animal health decision-making. Dr. Bansal previously held a fellowship at the prestigious RAPIDD Postdoctoral Program (of the US National Institutes of Health and the Department of Homeland Security) and developed novel methods for understanding the spread of foreign animal diseases of national security concern. She also advised the Subcommittee on Foreign Animal Disease Threats of the National Science and Technology Council during this time.

Expertise:mathematical epidemiology, disease ecology, network science, and public health.

Jesse L. Goodman, MD, MPH, professor of medicine, Georgetown University School of Medicine

Dr. Goodman is trained in infectious diseases and public health physician. He formerly served as the U.S. Food and Drug Administration Chief Scientist and Deputy Commissioner. He worked extensively on emerging infectious diseases and pandemic preparedness both at FDA and with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, including helping lead the 2009 pandemic influenza response and the 2010 White House Medical Countermeasures Review. Dr. Goodman has also served as an advisor to the World Health Organization and others on medical countermeasures and vaccines. A member of the National Academy of Medicine, he is director of the Center on Medical Product Access, Safety and Stewardship at Georgetown and is a clinician at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital, the Washington D.C. VA Medical Center and Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.

Expertise: infectious diseases, public health, vaccines and biologics

Lawrence O. Gostin, Distinguished University Professor

Prof. Gostinis a Distinguished University Professor, Georgetown University's highest academic rank, Faculty Director of the O'Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law, and the Founding O'Neill Chair in Global Health Law. He directs the WHO Center on Global Health Law. He supports WHO and the INB in drafting the Pandemic Treaty and serves on WHO's Review Committee for amendments to the IHR. Professor Gostin has been at the center of public policy and law through multiple epidemics from AIDS, SARS, and Influenza H1N1 to Ebola, MERS, Zika, mpox, and COVID-19. He holds multiple international academic professional appointments, including at Oxford University, the University of Witwatersrand (South Africa), Melbourne University, and Sydney University. Additionally, he is an elected lifetime Member of the National Academy of Medicine/National Academy of Sciences, a Member of the Council on Foreign Relations, and a Fellow of the Hastings Center. In 2016, President Obama appointed Professor Gostin to the National Cancer Advisory Board. Commissioned by the White House, Professor Gostin currently chairs the National Academies Committee on the Current State of Research, Development, and Stockpiling of Smallpox Medical Countermeasures.

Expertise: Global Health Law, Health Law Policy and Bioethics

Rebecca Katz, PhD, MPH, Professor and Director, Center for Global Health Science and Security, Georgetown University Medical Center

Dr. Katz is an expert in global governance of public health emergencies and pandemic preparedness. For 20 years she has worked on public health preparedness, global health security, and outbreak response to emerging infectious diseases, with a focus on policy and governance. From 2004 to 2019, Dr. Katz was a consultant to the U.S. Department of State, working on issues related to the Biological Weapons Convention, pandemic influenza and disease surveillance. She returned to the Department of State in January 2021 as a senior advisor on the global COVID-19 response and global health security, and now a senior advisor in the Bureau of Global Health Security and Diplomacy She teaches courses on global health diplomacy, global health security, and emerging infectious diseases in School of Foreign Service. She is a member of the Council of Foreign Relations.

Expertise: global governance of public health emergencies and pandemic preparedness

Martha Nelson,adjunct professor of Global Infectious Disease

Dr Nelson is a computational biologist who studies pathogen evolution. She uses large-scale genetic data to study rapidly evolving RNA viruses at the human-animal interface, including coronavirus and influenza. She has worked as a scientist at the National Institutes of Health since 2008, where she discovered the zoonotic origins of the virus that caused the 2009 H1N1 influenza pandemic and collaborates with scientists on seven continents to mitigate future pandemic threats. She received her PhD from the Pennsylvania State University's Center for Infectious Disease Dynamics in 2008.

Expertise:Computational Biology, Molecular Epidemiology, Emerging Infectious Diseases, Phylogenetic Analysis, Virology and Zoonotic Diseases

Claire Standley, PhD, MSc,associate research professor, Center for Global Health Science and Security

Dr. Standley's research focuses on multisectoral approaches to health systems strengthening and international capacity building for public health, with an emphasis on the prevention and control of infectious diseases. Standley has a special interest in One Health (the health intersection of people, animals, and ecosystems) from a surveillance and response perspective.

She can address the importance of global frameworks supporting health systems strengthening for public health emergency preparedness and response, particularly those focused on preventing infectious disease outbreaks.

Expertise:Global health security policy and implementation; One Health