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TODAY news for Thursday, September 22, 2005

Loma Linda University Adventist Health Sciences Center news

LLUAHSC Board of Trustees member named an officer of the Order of Canada

Lorne Babiuk, PhD, DSc
Lorne Babiuk, PhD, DSc, member of the Board of Trustees for LLUAHSC since 2001, recently received the honor of being named an officer of the Order of Canada.
Lorne Babiuk, PhD, DSc, member of the Board of Trustees for Loma Linda University Adventist Health Sciences Center and University since 2001, as well as director of the University of Saskatchewan Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization (VIDO), has been named an officer of the Order of Canada. The honor is the equivalent to a knighthood in the British system. The Order of Canada honors Canadians who have demonstrated merit, achievement, and service to their communities. Created in 1967, the Order of Canada has three levels of achievement—companions, officers, and members. Dr. Babiuk was initiated as an officer effective June 29 by her Excellency the Right Honorable Adrienne Clarkson, governor general of Canada, announced on August 29.

A professor in the department of veterinary microbiology, Dr. Babiuk holds a Canada Research Chair in vaccinology and biotechnology, and has received the Saskatchewan Order of Merit. Since taking the helm of VIDO in 1993, he has overseen the creation of a unique and valuable element of Canada’s national biotechnology research infrastructure. Under his leadership, VIDO researchers have developed a growing library of patented technologies, including five “world firsts” in vaccine development.

An international authority in veterinary virology and immunology, Dr. Babiuk is recognized as a consummate team builder, research collaborator, and master negotiator. He serves on several scientific advisory boards and boards of directors including the Canadian Institutes of Health Research Institute of Infection and Immunity, the Canada Foundation for Innovation, Genome Canada, and the International Centre for Infectious Diseases.

Recently, his team of VIDO scientists and collaborators was offered $6.9 million through the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s Grand Challenges in Global Health initiative. The team will develop more effective vaccines for newborns, targeting developing countries. 

Dr. Babiuk is the lead proponent of the International Vaccine Centre (InterVac), which will be one of the largest vaccine research laboratories in North America when completed on the University of Saskatchewan campus in 2009. The center will house Saskatchewan’s first Level 3 labs dealing with both human and animal diseases such as SARS and the avian flu. Scientists from academic, research, and government institutions in Canada and around the world will develop and test new vaccines and methods of delivering vaccines.

Dr. Babiuk has mentored more than 90 graduate students and postdoctoral fellows who have obtained positions in industry, academia, and government and served as a member of many grant and government committees and a reviewer for various scientific journals, as well as serving on general editorial boards. He has published more than 400 peer-reviewed manuscripts and 80 book chapters and reviews.

In addition to being named to the Order of Canada, Dr. Babiuk received the Saskatchewan Centennial Medal  from Lieutenant Governor Lynda Haverstock on July 15. The medal recognizes the important role that individuals have played in the development of communities in the province during   Saskatchewan’s centennial year.

TODAY news for Thursday, September 22, 2005