In the developing world, infectious diseases – pneumonia, diarrhea, malaria and AIDS – are the major causes of illness, disability and premature death. In sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America, and Asia, they account for tens of millions of deaths each year – and most of the victims are children. At the same time, new infections emerging in the Third World can potentially spread to the United States, with the worst case within days or even hours.
Under the leadership of Adolfo Garcia-Sastre, PhD, Professor of Microbiology and Medicine (in Infectious Diseases) and the Fischberg Chair in Medicine at Mount Sinai, Mount Sinai Global Health will undertake a concerted effort to fight this scourge, focusing on three major areas:
- Emerging infectious diseases. Dr Garcia-Sastre is the Director of Mount Sinai’s Global Health and Emerging Pathogens Institute (GHEPI), which studyies and combats infectious diseases, and the pathogens that cause them.
- Influenza virus. Dr. Garcia-Sastre directs an international program as Principal Investigator of a Center of Excellence in Influenza Research and Surveillance. The program studies influenza virus in wild-life, and domestic animal and humans in many different regions of the world, including Vietnam, Europe, Guatemala, Argentina, Chile, Alaska and California.
- West Nile. Dr Garcia-Sastre works with Dr. Ana Fernandez-Sesma to study the diversity and prevalence of dengue and other mosquito-borne viruses in Pantanal, Brazil.