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IDM Alumni Stories

Alumni of the Department of Infectious Diseases and Microbiology are making an impact in all areas of public health. Here are profiles of a few of our notable alumni.

Rister opens book store, continues making the public healthier

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PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE - On the surface, Adriene Rister (IDM) may seem to have made a dramatic career change, from dealing with infectious diseases for the state of Maine to running a children's book store. She sees the mission of both as bettering the community. "In a way, I like to think of this as part of public health...A bookstore should be a community hub, a place to gather around literacy and education, and a place to teach our kids abou... 

Obituary: Robert B. Yee, 'godfather' of Pitt Public Health

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PITTSBURGH POST GAZETTE - Robert Yee was as brilliant as he was modest. "One of the godfathers" of Pitt Public Health, Yee mentored hundreds of students and played a pivotal role as a researcher who made several "breakthrough" discoveries about bacteria.   

Hernandez's research adds to pharmaceutical industry's growing pressure over high price of drugs

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FOX NEWS - "It's not about innovation, it's about inflation in existing products," explains Inmaculada Hernandez (HPM '16). "They are the same companies that operate in other countries and they don't show this behavior and that's because in other countries they are lucky to have this regulatory environment that prevents them from doing this."   

Sundermann keeps asking 'why?'

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ALEX SUNDERMANN (IDM) is the featured MPH profile in the fall issue of Prevention Strategist, a magazine issued by the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology. When asked about the best advice he ever received, he said, 'keep asking 'why?'"  

Zaccard appointed chair of the Chicago Women in STEM Initiative

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To ensure the continuity of the Chicago Women in STEM and Academia Initiative, and represent postdoctoral women, Northwestern University welcomed IDM's COLLEEN ZACCARD to the Northwestern University Postdoctoral Forum (NUPF) Executive Board as the Chair of the Chicago Women in STEM Initiative.   

Celebrate 70: DeLucia presents cholesterol regulation of HIV-1 trans infection and HIV-1 disease progression (VIDEO)

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Doctoral candidate, DIANA DeLUCIA (IDM '19), presented some of her dissertation research on how the cholesterol levels in immune cells might be impacting HIV infection and disease progression to AIDS. It was found that antigen-presenting cells in nonprogressors have lower cholesterol levels which is associated with their inability to pass virus on to other cells.   

Celebrate 70: Global health impact (video)

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Faculty and alumni spoke on a panel to highlight the public health impact on global communities, including immigration crises, planetary health, climate change, and the importance of health systems. KELLY SALDANA (BCHS ’01) talked about creating resiliency and figuring out what that means both at the individual level and the systems level to help lessen negative effects of climate change.  

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Alumni Awards and Profiles

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Sundermann keeps asking 'why?' 

Sundermann keeps asking 'why?'

ALEX SUNDERMANN (IDM) is the featured MPH profile in the fall issue of Prevention Strategist, a magazine issued by the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology. When asked about the best advice he ever received, he said, 'keep asking 'why?'" (10/02/2018)
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Poston receives San-Pin Wang Award from the Chlamydia Basic Research Society 

Poston receives San-Pin Wang Award from the Chlamydia Basic Research Society

The San-Pin Wang Award for the best graduate student oral presentation at the Chlamydia Basic Research Society 2017 conference was given to TAYLOR POSTON (IDM '17). This award was established in honor of the memory of Dr. San-Pin Wang and a cash prize was generously donated by the San-Pin Wang Endo... (03/14/2018)
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Farmartino: 2018 Early Career Excellence Award 

Farmartino: 2018 Early Career Excellence Award

In 2012, a year before completing her MPH, CHRISTINA FARMARTINO (IDM ’13) was hired as executive director of The Open Door, which provides supportive housing and representative payee services to individuals living with HIV/AIDS—including active injection drug users—to improve their health and housin... (02/23/2018)
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2017 faculty and staff Delta Omega initiates 

2017 faculty and staff Delta Omega initiates

The following four individuals will be inducted into the Omicron chapter of the Delta Omega Honorary Society at the Graduate School of Public Health, recognizing merit and encouraging further excellence in, and devotion to, public health work: Nancy W. Glynn (EPI '94), faculty and alumna; Leah M. ... (05/18/2017)
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Debra Cen (IDM '91) 

Debra Cen (IDM '91)

A passion for science, business, and American culture has propelled Hui “Debra” Cen (ScDHy ’91) to a sweet spot. Having sold one successful biotech start-up and handed off another, the Silicon Valley entrepreneur is now turning her attention to a high-tech way to promote the cultural strength of the... (05/29/2013)
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IDM Alumni Videos

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Hernandez's research adds to pharmaceutical industry's growing pressure over high price of drugs 

Hernandez's research adds to pharmaceutical industry's growing pressure over high price of drugs

FOX NEWS - "It's not about innovation, it's about inflation in existing products," explains Inmaculada Hernandez (HPM '16). "They are the same companies that operate in other countries and they don't show this behavior and that's because in other countries they are lucky to have this regulatory env... (01/24/2019)
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Celebrate 70: DeLucia presents cholesterol regulation of HIV-1 trans infection and HIV-1 disease progression (VIDEO) 

Celebrate 70: DeLucia presents cholesterol regulation of HIV-1 trans infection and HIV-1 disease progression (VIDEO)

Doctoral candidate, DIANA DeLUCIA (IDM '19), presented some of her dissertation research on how the cholesterol levels in immune cells might be impacting HIV infection and disease progression to AIDS. It was found that antigen-presenting cells in nonprogressors have lower cholesterol levels which i... (04/19/2018)
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