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2021 Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigators

David Veesler, PhD, associate professor in the Department of Biochemistry, Trevor Bedford, PhD, affiliate associate professor in the Department of Genome Sciences, and Frederick “Erick” A. Matsen IV, PhD, affiliate associate professor in the Department of Genome Sciences, were named 2021 Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) Investigators.

These scientists have made critical international contributions to understanding emerging infectious diseases.

Veesler was selected for his work to eradicate infectious disease in people. His team is mining bat viruses and the immune responses they elicit to combat future viral outbreaks. His lab focuses on how pathogens access host cells and how the immune system responds.

Bedford was selected for his research in improving the world’s ability to spot and respond to worrisome new viral strains. Since the start of the pandemic, his lab’s analyses have been crucial to understanding the evolution and transmission of SARS-CoV-2.

Matsen was selected for his work to develop computational algorithms to analyze large sets of genetic data from an evolutionary perspective. His lab is creating new, sophisticated statistical models to figure out how immune cells rapidly mutate to produce antibodies that can fight off new pathogens.

Read more on the UW Medicine Newsroom.

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