Our Global Health Program advisory committee comprises a group of esteemed experts from outside of the foundation who offer a wide range of experiences and perspectives. This group plays an important role in strengthening our work by offering independent assessments of our strategies and helping us evaluate results.
John Bell, G.B.E., F.R.S., FMedSci (Chair of Committee)
John Bell is the Regius Professor of Medicine at Oxford University. Bell went to Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar to train in medicine and undertook postgraduate training in London and at Stanford University.
At Stanford, he developed research interests in the area of immunology and genetics, with a particular focus on characterizing the molecular events associated with susceptibility to autoimmune diseases. He returned to Oxford as a Wellcome Trust senior clinical fellow in 1987 and was elected to the Nuffield Professorship of Clinical Medicine in Oxford in 1992. In 1993, he founded the Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics, one of the world’s leading centers for complex trait common disease genetics. In 2002, he became the Regius Professor of Medicine.
Bell served as president of the Academy of Medical Sciences from 2006 to 2011. He was responsible for the working party that produced the academy’s highly influential “Strengthening Clinical Research” report that highlighted the need for the U.K. to focus some of its attention on developing expertise in translational research. In 2006, he was appointed by the chancellor of the exchequer to chair the Office for the Strategic Coordination of Health Research (OSCHR), and in December 2011, he was appointed one of two U.K. Life Sciences Champions by the prime minister. In collaboration with industry, academia, charity, and research organizations, Bell drafted the U.K. Life Sciences Industrial Strategy, which provides recommendations to the government on the long-term success of the life sciences sector. The report was published on August 30, 2017.
In 2008, he was made a fellow of the Royal Society and a Knight Bachelor for his services to medical science. He was appointed Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the British Empire (GBE) in the 2015 New Year Honours for services to medicine, medical research, and the life science industry.
Bell has been involved extensively in the development of research programs in genetics and genomics and in the development of a clinical research program across the U.K. He sits on a range of advisory panels for public and private sector bodies responsible for biomedical research in Canada, Denmark, France, Singapore, Sweden, and the U.K, and he is a founding director of three biotechnology start-up companies.
Alan Bernstein, O.C., O.Ont., Ph.D,. FRSC
Alan Bernstein is president of the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research (CIFAR), one of Canada’s major global research assets. From 2008 to 2011, Bernstein was the executive director of the Global HIV Vaccine Enterprise, an international alliance of researchers and funders charged with accelerating the search for an HIV vaccine.
Previously, he served as the founding president of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (2000 to 2007), Canada’s federal agency for the support of health research. In that capacity, he led the transformation of health research in Canada. After receiving his Ph.D. from the University of Toronto, and following postdoctoral work in London, Bernstein joined the Ontario Cancer Institute (1974 to 1985). In 1985, he joined the new Samuel Lunenfeld Research Institute in Toronto. He was named associate director in 1988, and he served as director of research from 1994 to 2000.
Bernstein has written more than 225 scientific publications and has made extensive contributions to the study of stem cells, hematopoiesis, and cancer. He chairs or is a member of advisory and review boards in Canada, as well as in Italy, the U.K., and the United States. Bernstein has received numerous awards and honorary degrees for his contributions to science, including the 2008 Gairdner Wightman Award, induction into the Canadian Medical Hall of Fame, and the Henry G. Friesen International Prize in Health Research. He is a senior research fellow of Massey College and in 2002, he was appointed an officer of the Order of Canada.
Zulfiqar A. Bhutta, M.B.B.S., D.C.H., F.R.C.P., F.R.C.P.C.H., F.C.P.S., F.A.A.P., Ph.D.
Zulfiqar A. Bhutta is the Robert Harding Inaugural Chair in Global Child Health at Toronto’s Hospital for Sick Children, co-director of the SickKids Centre for Global Child Health, and the founding director of the Centre of Excellence in Women and Child Health at the Aga Khan University. He also holds adjunct professorships at several leading universities, including the School of Public Health at Johns Hopkins University, Tufts University, Boston University School of Public Health, University of Alberta, and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. He is Distinguished National Professor of the Government of Pakistan and was the founding chair of Pakistan’s National Research Ethics Committee from 2003 to 2014.
Bhutta was a member of the Independent Expert Review Group (iERG) appointed by the UN Secretary General for monitoring global progress in maternal and child health MDGs (2011 to 2015). He represented the global academic and research organizations on the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunizations (Gavi) board, and he also serves on Gavi’s Evaluation Advisory Committee. Bhutta was the co-chair of the Global Countdown for 2015 and 2030 Initiatives (2006 to 2017). He is the co-chair of the Maternal and Child Health oversight committee of WHO’s Eastern Mediterranean Region and the chairman of the Coalition of Centres in Global Child Health, whose secretariat is based at Toronto’s Hospital for Sick Children. He is a technical member of the high-level UN Health and Human Rights committee and an executive committee member of Partnership for Maternal, Newborn, and Child Health (PMNCH).
Bhutta was educated at the University of Peshawar and obtained his Ph.D. from the Karolinska Institute, Sweden. He is a fellow of the Royal College of Physicians (Edinburgh and London), the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (London), American Academy of Pediatrics, and the Pakistan Academy of Sciences. He heads a large research team in Pakistan working on issues of maternal, newborn, and child survival and nutrition globally and regionally. Bhutta has served as a member of WHO’s Global Advisory Committee for Health Research, the board of the Child and Health and Nutrition Initiative of the Global Forum for Health Research, and the steering committees of the International Zinc and Vitamin A Nutrition Consultative Groups. He was a founding board member of the PMNCH and a board member of the International Center for Diarrheal Diseases Research (2011 to 2017). Bhutta was a member of the WHO Strategic Advisory Committee for Vaccines (SAGE) from 2010 to 2015 and the Advisory Committee for Health Research of the WHO EMRO. He is the former president of the Commonwealth Association of Paediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition (CAPGAN) and the Federation of Asia-Oceania Perinatal Societies (FAOPS). He is the current president of the International Pediatric Association (2016 to 2019), and he serves as a leading voice for health professionals supporting integrated maternal, newborn, and child health globally.
Bhutta is on several international editorial advisory boards, including the Lancet, BMJ, PLoS Medicine, PLoS ONE, BMC Public Health, and the Cochrane CDPLG and ARI groups. He has published eight books, 88 book chapters, and more than 800 indexed publications to date, including more than 150 in the world’s leading journal, Lancet. He is one of the most highly cited academics in global health (H index 117, i10 index 537, with more than 72,000 citations) and was ranked among the top 1 percent of highly cited researchers globally by the Web of Science in 2017. He has been a leading member of major Lancet series on child survival (2003), newborn survival (2005 and 2014), undernutrition (2008 and 2013), primary care (2008), stillbirths (2011 and 2016), and Pakistan (2013). He has also been a leading member of the recent series on childhood diarrhea and pneumonia (2013) and early child development (2016), and Lancet commissions on education for health professionals for the 21st century (2010), women and health (2015), indigenous health (2016), and adolescent health (2016).
He has won several awards, including the Tamgha-i-Imtiaz (Medal of Excellence) by the president of Pakistan for contributions to education and research (2000), the president of Pakistan’s gold medal for contributions to child health in Pakistan (2004), and the Outstanding Pediatrician of Asia award by the Asia Pacific Pediatric Association (2006). He is the first dual recipient of the Aga Khan University Distinguished Faculty Award for Research (2005) and Award of Distinction (2012). Bhutta was awarded the inaugural Programme for Global Pediatric Research Award for Outstanding Contributions to Global Child Health (2009) and the Kenneth Warren Prize for the best systematic review of community-based interventions by the Cochrane collaboration (2011). Bhutta was awarded the Global Advocacy Prize by the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (2012), the American Academy of Pediatrics’ Sam Fomon Award for lifetime contributions to nutrition research (2014), the WHO Ihsan Dogramaci Family Health Award (2014), the inaugural TUBA Academy of Sciences Award for global contributions to health and life sciences (2015), University of Toledo Medical Missions Hall of Fame Award (2016), and the Geneva Forum for Health Award for contributions to maternal and child health globally (2016). In August 2016, Bhutta was recognized with the president of Pakistan Pride of Performance Award for contributions to education and health. In November 2016, the World Academy of Sciences (Trieste) awarded him the TWAS Prize in Medical Sciences, and in 2017 the Pakistan Council for Science and Technology rated Bhutta as the highest ranking scientist from Pakistan across all disciplines. In November 2017, he was recognized by the Senate of Canada with its Canada 150 Medal for contributions to global child health.
Bhutta’s research interests include newborn and child survival, maternal and child undernutrition, and micronutrient deficiencies. He leads large research groups based in Karachi, Nairobi, and Toronto, with a special interest in research synthesis, expanding evidence-based interventions in community settings, and implementation research in health systems research. His work on community health staff and outreach services has influenced integrated maternal and newborn outreach programs for marginalized populations globally. His group’s work with WHO and PMNCH in developing consensus-based essential interventions for women, children, and adolescents is the dominant set of agreed interventions guiding global policy.
Tumani Corrah, M.D., Ph.D., F.R.C.P., P.P.W.A.C.P.
Tumani Corrah is the unit director of the Medical Research Council Unit in the Republic of the Gambia. He joined the unit in 1982 as a junior clinician and progressed through the ranks as a research clinician and senior clinician, director of clinical services, and acting unit director. In 2004, he became the first African director of the U.K. Medical Research Council Unit in the Gambia.
For more than two decades, Corrah has retained active research interests in tropical and infectious diseases, including tuberculosis, HIV, and malaria. His Ph.D. was groundbreaking, as he undertook one of the first trials of immunotherapy as an adjunct to the treatment of tuberculosis in Africa. He is a joint gold medal winner from the International Medical Informatics Association. He has served on the committees of many international organizations, including the African Aids Research Network (vice president), WHO Tuberculosis Task Force in Africa (member), Royal College of Physicians of London (international adviser), Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (international adviser), Visiting Committee of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (member), and Partnership Board of the EDCTP (member).
Corrah served as president of the West African College of Physicians and is currently the director of the college’s international office. An expert on research governance, he is a long-standing member of the Gambia government/MRC Ethics Committee, for which he served four years as chairman. He has strong links with governmental and nongovernmental organizations in Africa and throughout the world. An expert in capacity building, Corrah has been successful in establishing a number of productive, mutually beneficial North-South collaborations.
Yvonne Greenstreet, M.B.Ch.B, M.B.A.
Yvonne Greenstreet has over 25 years of global experience in the healthcare and pharmaceutical industries, spanning drug development, general management, and corporate strategy. She has led product development and commercialization teams in a wide range of therapy areas of both small molecules and biologics and over the course of her career has brought numerous new medicines to market.
Greenstreet is chief operating officer at Alnylam Pharmaceuticals. She was the founder and managing director of Highgate LLC, working with life sciences companies to help develop strategies that transform businesses, bring medicines to market, and maximize shareholder value. Previously, Greenstreet was senior vice president and head of Medicines Development at Pfizer from 2011-2013 and a member of the executive team with accountability for the $16bn Specialty Business.
Greenstreet was at GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) from 1992- 2010, most recently as senior vice president and chief of strategy for Research and Development, and as a member of the product management board. She previously served in various positions of increasing responsibility at GSK, including senior vice president for Medicines Development, where she led the creation of a global unit with the responsibility for the development and commercialization of new products across a wide range of therapeutic areas.
Greenstreet holds a bachelor of Medicine, bachelor of Surgery from the University of Leeds, United Kingdom and MBA from INSEAD, France.
Margaret A. Hamburg, M.D.
Margaret A. Hamburg, an internationally recognized leader in public health and medicine, is the foreign secretary for the U.S. National Academy of Medicine and the president of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). She is the former commissioner of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), having stepped down from that role in April 2015 after almost six years of service. As FDA commissioner, she was known for advancing regulatory science, streamlining and modernizing the FDA’s regulatory pathways, and globalization of the agency. Before joining the FDA, Hamburg was founding vice president and senior scientist at the Nuclear Threat Initiative, a foundation dedicated to reducing nuclear, chemical, and biological threats. Previous government positions include assistant secretary for planning and evaluation at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, health commissioner for New York City, and assistant director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases at the National Institutes of Health.
Hamburg earned her B.A. from Harvard College and her M.D. from Harvard Medical School, and she completed her medical residency at Weill Cornell Medical Center. She is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the American College of Physicians, and is an elected member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the National Academy of Medicine. Hamburg sits on the boards of the Commonwealth Fund, the Simons Foundation, the Urban Institute, and the American Museum of Natural History. She is also a member of the Harvard University Global Advisory Council, the Global Health Scientific Advisory Committee for the Gates Foundation, the Harvard Medical School Board of Fellows, and the World Dementia Council. She is the recipient of multiple honorary degrees and numerous awards.
H. Robert Horvitz, Ph.D.
H. Robert Horvitz shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 2002. He is the David H. Koch Professor of Biology at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), an investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, neurobiologist (neurology) at the Massachusetts General Hospital, a member of the MIT McGovern Institute for Brain Research, and a member of the MIT Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research.
Horvitz’s research, focused on the roundworm C. elegans, has helped define evolutionarily conserved molecular genetic pathways important in human biology and human disease, including a major cancer-gene pathway and the pathway responsible for programmed cell death, or apoptosis. He has received many honors and awards.
Horvitz is a member of the board of trustees of the Massachusetts General Hospital and is chairman of the board of trustees of the Society for Science and the Public. He was president of the Genetics Society of America. He has served on many editorial boards, visiting committees, and advisory committees. Horvitz was an advisor adviser to the WHO Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases. He was co-chair of the National Cancer Institute Working Group on Preclinical Models for Cancer, and a member of the National Human Genome Research Institute Advisory Council, the U.S. National Academies of Science and Institute of Medicine Committee on Guidelines for Human Embryonic Stem Cell Research, and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences Committee on Advancing Research in Science and Engineering. He also was a member of the advisory committee to the director of the National Institutes of Health, and he was a member of the council of the U.S. National Academy of Medicine. Horvitz has been a consultant to pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and venture capital companies.
Gagandeep “Cherry” Kang, MBBS, MD, PhD, FRCPath
Gagandeep Kang is known for her inter-disciplinary research studying the transmission, development and prevention of enteric infections and their sequelae in children in India. To develop practical approaches to support public health, she has also built national rotavirus and typhoid surveillance networks, established laboratories to support vaccine trials and conducted phase 1-3 clinical trials of vaccines, a comprehensive approach that has supported two WHO pre-qualified vaccines, made by two Indian companies. She is investigating the complex relationships between infection, gut function and physical and cognitive development, and seeking to build a stronger human immunology research in India.
Based at the Christian Medical College, Vellore, she has established strong training programmes for students and young faculty in clinical translational medicine aiming to build a cadre of clinical researchers studying relevant problems in India.
Salim S. Abdool Karim, M.B.Ch.B, Dip.Data (computer science), M.S., M.Med, F.F.P.H.M., Ph.D., D.Sc.(hc)
Salim S. Abdool Karim is a South African clinical infectious diseases epidemiologist who is widely recognized for his research contributions in HIV prevention and treatment. He is director of the Centre for the AIDS Program of Research in South Africa (CAPRISA) and CAPRISA professor of global health at Columbia University. He is also pro vice-chancellor (research) at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, and adjunct professor of medicine at Cornell University in New York. He has served as the president of the South African Medical Research Council and is an associate member of the Ragon Institute of Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and Harvard University.
His clinical research on tuberculosis-HIV treatment has shaped international guidelines on the clinical management of co-infected patients. He was co-leader of the CAPRISA 004 tenofovir gel trial that provided proof-of-concept that antiretrovirals can prevent sexually transmitted HIV infection and herpes simplex virus type 2 in women. He is co-inventor on patents that have been used in several HIV vaccine candidates and in passive immunization strategies with broadly neutralizing antibodies.
Abdool Karim is chair of the UNAIDS Scientific Expert Panel, WHO’s HIV Strategic and Technical Advisory Committee, and the WHO Tuberculosis-HIV Task Force. He serves on the boards of several journals, including the New England Journal of Medicine, Lancet Global Health, Lancet HIV, and mBio. He is a member of the Royal Society of South Africa, Academy of Science of South Africa, African Academy of Sciences, and the World Academy of Sciences (TWAS). He is a member of the U.S. National Academy of Medicine, the American Academy of Microbiology, and the Association of American Physicians.
His awards include the TWAS Prize in Medical Sciences, the African Academy of Science’s Olusegun Obasanjo Prize for Scientific Discovery and Technological Innovation, the Science for Society Gold Medal Award from the Academy of Science in South Africa, the Platinum Medal Lifetime Achievement Award from the South African Medical Research Council, and Columbia University’s Allan Rosenfield Alumni Award for Excellence. The African Union awarded him the Kwame Nkrumah Continental Scientific Award, the most prestigious scientific award in Africa.
Shabir A. Madhi, M.B.B.C.H., FCPaeds, Ph.D.
Shabir Madhi is professor of vaccinology at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg. He also holds the positions of director of the South African Medical Research Council Respiratory and Meningeal Pathogens Research Unit and he is research chair in vaccine preventable diseases at the Department of Science and Technology at the National Research Foundation. He is the immediate past director of the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (2011 to 2017), and he currently serves as the chair of the National Advisory Group on Immunization in South Africa.
Author of more than 350 scientific publications, his research focus has been on epidemiology and clinical development of vaccines against pneumonia, diarrheal disease, and for maternal immunization. These studies have been pivotal to informing WHO and SAGE policy on the use of such vaccines in low-middle income countries. He has served as a temporary consultant/technical adviser to WHO in the field of pneumonia and vaccines.
His scientific awards include European Society for Infectious Diseases Young Investigators Award (2006), as well as a number of national awards, including the 2009 National Science and Technology Forum: TW Kambule Award (2009), National Research Foundations President’s Award: Transformation of the Science Cohort (2010), Medical Research Council Lifetime Award platinum medal (2013), and the European and Developing Countries Clinical Trial Partnership Award for Scientific Leadership (2016). He is an elected member of the Academy of Science of South Africa (2012) and the Royal Society of South Africa (2016), and in 2017 he was elected as a fellow of the World Academy of Sciences.
Francine Ntoumi, Ph.D., HDR, PvDz, FRCPedin
Francine Ntoumi serves as the chair and head of research of the Congolese Foundation for Medical Research. Born in Brazzaville in the Republic of the Congo, Ntoumi studied in France and got habilitation at University ParisVI (2002) and at University of Tübingen in Germany (2014). In Congo, Gabon, and Germany, she worked as a researcher, and she held positions in international organizations in the Netherlands and Tanzania from 2005 to 2010. Also during this time, she was the first African leader of the Multilateral Initiative on Malaria (MIM).
During her career in malaria research, she trained many African scientists in various disciplines such as immunology and molecular epidemiology. Since 2009, Ntoumi has been highly involved in developing health research capacities in Central Africa through the regional network of excellence, the Central Africa Network on Tuberculosis, HIV/AIDS, Malaria (CANTAM). In the Republic of Congo in 2008, she created the Congolese Foundation for Medical Research (FCRM), which supports health research activities in the country. Her institution has established the first molecular biology lab at the University Marien Ngouabi, where she is senior lecturer. She is also highly engaged in promoting gender balance in science in the African region through an important program, “To make Science, a female ambition.”
Ntoumi is member of several scientific and advisory committees and is involved in many international scientific networks in Africa, Europe, and the United States. She is a fellow of the African Academy of Science.
In recognition of her efforts in developing research capacities in Africa, Ntoumi received the prestigious African Union Kwame Nkrumah Regional Scientific Award for women (2012), Germany’s Georg Forster Prize (2015), France’s Christophe Merieux Prize, and the Gold Medal for her contribution in science (research, training, advocacy, and transforming the environment) by the president of the Republic of Congo (2016).
Eric G. Pamer, M.D.
Eric G. Pamer received his M.D. from Case Western Reserve University Medical School and completed clinical training in internal medicine and infectious diseases at University of California San Diego (UCSD) Medical Center. He was a postdoctoral fellow with Charles E. Davis at UCSD, with Maggie So at Scripps Research Institute, and with Michael Bevan at the University of Washington before he moved to Yale University. In 2000, he moved his laboratory to Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC) in New York, where he has been chief of infectious diseases and, more recently, head of the Division of Subspecialty Medicine.
Pamer initially studied T cell responses to Listeria monocytogenes infection, demonstrating the efficiency of antigen presentation and the impact of antigen presentation and inflammation on T cell response magnitudes. Upon moving to MSKCC, he extended his research to inflammatory monocytes. In a series of studies, Pamer demonstrated that inflammatory monocytes differentiate into TNF and iNOS producing dendritic cells in response to L. monocytogenes. He demonstrated that CCR2 chemokine receptors drive monocyte emigration from bone marrow but not, as previously assumed, immigration into infected tissues. Pamer showed that bone marrow mesenchymal cells have hair-trigger responses to TLR-ligands and produce CCL2, driving monocytes into the bloodstream. He demonstrated that monocytes transport fungal spores and Mycobacterium tuberculosis from the lung to mediastinal lymph nodes and, during Mtb infection, transfer antigen to dendritic cells to prime CD4 T cells in lymph nodes.
Because infections caused by highly antibiotic-resistant pathogens are a growing problem, Pamer has focused on Vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus (VRE) and Clostridium difficile infections and the defensive roles of mucosal immunity and the microbiota. A seminal study demonstrating that antibiotics reduce intestinal immune defenses and facilitate VRE infection was followed by discovery of commensal bacterial species that enhance antimicrobial defenses. Pamer focused on patients undergoing bone marrow transplantation and discovered dramatic microbiota diversity losses following transplantation. He also demonstrated that diversity loss is associated with increased mortality. Pamer’s work has led to the first randomized clinical trial to determine the feasibility and benefit of reintroducing a patient’s own intestinal microbiota following bone marrow transplantation.
Harold Varmus, M.D.
Harold Varmus was co-recipient of the 1989 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for studies of the genetic basis of cancer. In April 2015, he joined the Meyer Cancer Center of Weill Cornell Medicine as the Lewis Thomas University Professor of Medicine. He is also a senior associate member of the New York Genome Center, where he helps develop programs in cancer genomics.
Previously, Varmus was the director of the National Cancer Institute for five years, the president of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center for 10 years, and director of the National Institutes of Health for six years. A graduate of Amherst College and Harvard University in English literature and of Columbia University in medicine, he trained further at Columbia University Medical Center, the National Institutes of Health, and the University of California San Francisco (UCSF), before becoming a member of the UCSF basic science faculty for more than two decades.
He is a member of the U.S. National Academies of Sciences and Medicine, and he is involved in several initiatives to promote science and health in developing countries. He also serves on advisory groups for several academic, governmental, philanthropic, and commercial institutions, including as co-chair of the Mayor’s LifeSci NYC and member of advisory boards for Chan-Zuckerberg Science and three biotechnology companies (Surrozen, Dragonfly, and PetraPharma).
The author of about 400 scientific papers and five books, including a recent memoir, The Art and Politics of Science, Varmus was a co-chair of U.S. President Obama’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology, a co-founder and chairman of the board of the Public Library of Science, and chair of the Scientific Board of the Gates Foundation Grand Challenges in Global Health.
Timothy M. Wright, M.D.
Timothy M. Wright, MD, has been chief R&D officer at Regulus Therapeutics, a clinical stage biotech in San Diego, CA, since 2016. Over the past two decades, he has served in leadership positions from discovery research to late stage pharmaceutical development at Pfizer (2001-2004), Novartis (2004-2015), and the California Institutes for Biomedical Research (Calibr, 2015-2016). In these roles he has contributed to the development of numerous innovative medicines from concept to market.
A native of Wilmington, Delaware, Wright attended the University of Delaware (BA, Biology) and received his medical and research training at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine (MD, Rheumatology, Immunology, Molecular Biology) and the Medical College of Virginia (Internal Medicine). In his early research career, he made advances in the understanding of the biochemistry and molecular biology of signal transduction.
Wright held academic positions as a physician-scientist at Johns Hopkins and the University of Pittsburgh where his research was focused on the humoral, cellular, and molecular aspects of immune responses in autoimmune diseases. While at the University of Pittsburgh, he led the formation of the Pittsburgh Arthritis Institute, was chief of Rheumatology and Clinical Immunology and was the recipient of the Margaret J. Miller endowed Professorship for Arthritis Research, before moving to the pharmaceutical industry in 2001.
Wright serves on the Board of Directors for Schrödinger, Inc. and ENYO Pharma, and as a scientific advisor to several academic and industry organizations.