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Chair's Message

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The Department of Microbiology and Immunology (MNI) at Western University has a rich and influential research and teaching history in microbial pathogenesis, functional immunology/immunological disorders, and host/virus interactions.  This year we will host the 2015 Annual Meeting for the American Society for Virology organized by Drs. C.Yong Kang, Jimmy Dikeakos, and Stephen Barr from our department.

The Department of Microbiology and Immunology (MNI) at Western University has a rich and influential research and teaching history in microbial pathogenesis, functional immunology/immunological disorders, and host/virus interactions.  This year we will host the 2015 Annual Meeting for the American Society for Virology organized by Drs. C.Yong Kang, Jimmy Dikeakos, and Stephen Barr from our department.

I am honored to return to the department where I received an outstanding knowledge base in microbiology and immunology and where I started my research career as an undergraduate.  To this day, our department provides the most advanced, didactic, and interactive undergraduate education in virology, bacteriology, basic immunology and immune disorders, the microbiome/probiotics, and host-pathogen interaction. Our graduates hold top research, education, and industry positions around the world and we encourage you to Linkedin with them if you are considering an education/career in microbiology and immunology.

This department represents a family with a 75 year history whose patriarch, Dr. Robert G.E. Murray still roams our halls and challenges our students. His Legacy gift has greatly advanced our outstanding graduate program and honours excellence in research.  Two faculty, Drs. Susan Koval and Tom Linn who taught me will/have retired this year and become Emeriti Professors to join the ranks of nearly a dozen Emeriti Professors who regular return to Western and impart their wisdom.  Our 30+ research faculty are exploring important health and lifesaving research areas from probiotics for healthy living to multidrug resistant Staph aureus (MRSA) to HIV vaccine development to autoimmunity in Rheumatoid Arthritis.

Finally, we have started a new era of research in the department with multi-million dollar investments to (1) renovate nearly 6000 sq.ft. of old teaching labs to new Host-Pathogen Research labs for our next generation of microbiologists/immunologists, (2) to establish The Imaging Pathogens for Knowledge Translation (ImPaKT) Facility, a new CL2+/CL3 facility that is first of its kind in the world for advanced imaging on infectious pathogens, and finally, (3) to create the Western Ontario Center for Virology, a translation labs with LHSC to provide advanced treatment monitoring for viral infections across the Province of Ontario.