Global Health Mentor Michael Rogers
Michael D. Rogers
Global Health Mentor
Global Health Mentors are alumni with substantial global health
experience who are willing to provide career advice, connections and
mentoring to current Gillings students interested in a global health career.
After graduating from UNC’s School of Public Health with an MSPH and Ph.D. in Medical Parasitology, I entered a postdoctoral fellowship program at St Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, TN. At St. Jude I received training in Clinical Microbiology and developed an interest in infections in the immunocompromised patient. Read More
From there I went to work at Burroughs Wellcome Co., a pharmaceutical company that specialized in infectious diseases. My job at Burroughs Wellcome Co. was to conduct clinical research studies of new anti-infective agents. I had the good fortunate to be involved in a number of clinical research studies of parasitic and viral diseases including head lice, leishmaniasis, malaria, toxoplasmosis and herpes. However, I maintained my interest in infections in the immunocompromised patient and was naturally drawn to the new and emerging disease AIDS. In the early stages of the epidemic, most patients presented with a rare lung infection caused by the opportunistic organism Pneumocystis carinii. Although the antibacterial trimethoprim-sulfomethoxazole is effective against P. carinii, it has potential serious toxicities so new drugs were needed. It happened that we were developing a new drug for malaria at the time – atovaquone- so we tested it against P. carinii. It turned out that atovaquone was highly effective in the treatment of pneumocystis pneumonia in AIDS patients so we conducted the required clinical studies and the drug eventually went to market for both malaria and P. carinii pneumonia in the immunocompromised patient. It was this experience that taught me that a small group of dedicated and creative individuals can have a huge impact on global health problems. I have subsequently spent my career in the biotech industry in the discovery and development of drugs for chronic viral diseases – HIV, HCV and most recently CMV.
- United States
- Western Europe
Areas of Interest
- Infectious diseases
- Tropical medicine
- Drug discovery
- Drug development
Depends on work schedule