April 19 conference sessions
April 20 conference sessions
See video of individual sessions below.
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Pathogens Project Conference

Geneva, Switzerland | April 19-20, 2023

On April 19-20, 2023 the task force hosted a public meeting on “Creating the Framework for Tomorrow’s Pathogen Research." This public-facing conference included task force members, policy leaders, journalists, scientists, and civic leaders, among others. Its discussions inform a future summary report with recommendations, along with individually prepared papers focused on risk assessment and mitigation of high-risk pathogen research. These will be published in a special edition of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists and made available on the Bulletin’s website.

The Pathogens Project is made possible through the generosity of:

  • Gurley Family Charitable Fund 
  • Robert and Eleanor Meyers
  • Keith D. and Arlene M. Bronstein Foundation 
  • Anonymous donors
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Conference Agenda

Click on each session's title to access the video recording.

Wednesday, April 19, 2023

  • 12:00-1:30 p.m.

    Opening lunch, Welcome, Setting the Scene

    • Rachel Bronson, President & CEO, Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists 
    • David Relman, Thomas C. and Joan M. Merigan Professor in Medicine, Professor of Microbiology & Immunology at Stanford University
  • 1:45-2:45 p.m.

    Biorisks in the future

    Where is the cutting edge of biological research on pathogens? What are key risks and controversial boundaries? What does the future hold? 

    • Ravindra Gupta, Professor of Clinical Microbiology at the Cambridge Institute for Therapeutic Immunology and Infectious Diseases
    • Clare Jolly, Professor of Virus Cell Biology at University College London
    • Gustavo Palacios, Professor, Department of Microbiology, Division of Infectious Disease, Global Health & Emerging Pathogens Institute, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai 
    • Volker Thiel, Director of Virology, Institute of Virology and Immunology in Bern and Muehlhauser
    • Moderator: Jesse Bloom, Professor at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center and Investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute  
  • 2:45-4:00 p.m.

    Global biorisk management

    What tools and mechanisms does the international community currently have to address biological risks? How do these match up with future biorisks?  Where are the gaps and opportunities for the international community to cultivate a culture of safe, secure and responsible research? 

    • Samuel Bonti-Ankomah, Centre for Biosecurity, Public Health Agency of Canada, and International Experts Group of Biosafety and Biosecurity Regulators
    • Alex Demarsh, Senior Research Fellow, Blue Dot 
    • Adedeji Ebo, Director and Deputy to the High Representative, UN Office for Disarmament Affairs
    • Stephanie Norlock, Program Officer, International Federation of Biosafety Associations 
    • Emmanuelle Tuerlings, Technical Officer, Research for Health Department, Science Division, WHO
    • Moderator: Filippa Lentzos, Associate Professor in Science & International Security at Kings College London  
  • 4:15-5:00 p.m.

    Building capacity nationally and regionally

    What are successful examples of building biorisk management capacities nationally and regionally? What still needs to be done, and by whom? What are the biggest challenges and opportunities?

    • Anurag Agrawal, Dean, BioSciences & Health Research, Trivedi School of Biosciences, Ashoka University
    • Nisreen AL-Hmoud, Director, Biosafety and Biosecurity Centre, Royal Scientific Society of Jordan
    • Moderator: David Heymann, Professor of Infectious Disease Epidemiology, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine
  • 6:30-8:00 p.m.


    • Introduction, David Kuhlman, Chairman of the Board, Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists 
    • Zeynep Tufekci, Craig Newmark Professor of Journalism, Columbia University; author, columnist The New York Times; contributor, The Atlantic

Thursday, April 20, 2023

  • 9:00-9:15 a.m.

    Welcome to Day 2

    • Ravindra Gupta, Professor of Clinical Microbiology at the Cambridge Institute for Therapeutic Immunology and Infectious Diseases
  • 9:15-9:45 a.m.

    A view from China

    How does China view biorisks and what biorisk management strategies is China adopting?

    • George Gao, Vice President, National Natural Science Foundation of China
  • 9:45-10:45 a.m.

    The range of risk on the horizon

    How is the biorisk landscape shifting? How can we improve forecasting of future biorisks? What values and principles should inform responses to these risks?

    • Françoise Baylis, Distinguished Research Professor, Dalhousie University, Canada
    • Asha George, Executive Director, Bipartisan Commission on Biodefense 
    • Jens Kuhn, Principal Scientist and Director of Virology at the NIH/NIAID/Integrated Research Facility, Fort Detrick
    • Poh Lian Lim, Director of High-Level Isolation Unit, National Centre for Infectious Disease Singapore
    • Moderator: Suzet McKinney, Principal and Director of Life Sciences, Sterling Bay
  • 11:15 a.m. - 12:15 p.m.

    Empirical studies tracking risks

    What data do we have on biorisks? What are key trends, key gaps? What empirical studies are needed to better inform biorisk management?

    • Rocco Casagrande, Founder and Chair of the Board, Gryphon Scientific 
    • Gregory Koblentz, Associate professor and director of the Biodefense Graduate Program at George Mason University's Schar School of Policy and Government
    • Weiwen Zhang, Distinguished Professor of Synthetic Biology and Biochemical Engineering, Tianjin University of China
    • Moderator: Sandra López-Vergès, Senior Health Researcher and Chief, Gorgas Memorial Institute of Health Sciences 
  • 1:30-2:00 p.m.

    A view from Sub-Saharan Africa

    How does Sub-Saharan Africa view biorisks and what biorisk management strategies is Sub-Saharan Africa adopting?

    • Ameenah Gurib-Fakim, Sixth and first female president of the Republic of Mauritius 
  • 2:00-3:00 p.m.

    Roles and responsibilities for governments and international organizations

    How can governments advance global debates on biorisks, biorisk management, and cultivating cultures of safe, secure and responsible research?

    • Gerald Parker, Associate Dean for Global One Health, Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, Texas A&M University
    • Trevor Smith, Senior Program Manager, Biological & Chemical Security, UNSCR 1540 Implementation WMD Threat Reduction Program, Global Affairs Canada
    • Moderator: Shahid Jameel, Sultan Qaboos bin Said Fellow and Principal Investigator, Project on ‘Public Health, Science and Technology in Muslim Societies’ at the Oxford Centre for Islamic Studies 
  • 3:15-4:15 p.m.

    Science Communicators: Shaping the narrative in an uncertain environment

    What role do journalists and editors play in uncovering and communicating biorisks? What challenges and opportunities are there in reporting on biorisks? How do you balance awareness-raising and information hazards?

    • Katherine Eban, Contributing Editor, Vanity Fair 
    • Sarah Knapton, Science Editor, The Daily Telegraph 
    • Natasha Loder, Health Editor, The Economist 
    • Moderator: John Mecklin, Editor-in-chief, Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists
  • 4:15-5:00 p.m.

    Closing Keynote

    • Marc Lipsitch, Professor of Epidemiology and founding Director of the Center for Communicable Disease Dynamics at Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health 
  • 5:00-5:20 p.m.

    Concluding Remarks

    • Jesse Bloom, Professor at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center and Investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute
    • Filippa Lentzos, Associate Professor in Science & International Security at Kings College London


  • Anurag Agrawal

    Dr. Anurag Agrawal is Dean, BioSciences and Health Research, Trivedi School of Biosciences, Ashoka University, India, and former director of the Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology, a national laboratory of CSIR, India. His primary research is in respiratory biology and broader interests are in a new vision of health and healthcare seen through the lenses of emerging technologies. He serves on numerous national and global advisory groups, recently chairing the World Health Organization technical advisory group for viral evolution, the Lancet-Financial Times commission for governing digital health futures, and serving on the pandemic preparedness subgroup at the Global Partnership for Artificial Intelligence.

  • Nisreen AL-Hmoud

    Dr. AL-Hmoud has served as the director of the Biosafety and Biosecurity Centre at the Royal Scientific Society of Jordan since October 2015. As a scientist, Dr. AL-Hmoud is motivated to provide research that focuses on the public good; her research emphasis is the preservation of human health and biodiversity. During the last fifteen years, Dr. AL-Hmoud has dedicated her research to the development of scientific capacity in the fields of water & food safety and security and evaluation of environmental risks for scientists, government agencies, local communities and non-governmental organizations in Jordan and in the Middle East and North Africa region. Dr. AL-Hmoud is actively contributing to biorisk management capacity building programs nationally and regionally.

  • Francoise Baylis

    Françoise Baylis, CM, ONS, PhD, FRSC, FCAHS, FISC is distinguished research professor, Dalhousie University, Canada. Baylis is a philosopher whose innovative work at the intersection of policy and practice, aims to move the limits of mainstream bioethics and to develop more effective ways to understand and tackle global public policy challenges.  Baylis is the author of Altered Inheritance: CRISPR and the Ethics of Human Genome Editing, which won the 2020 PROSE Award in Clinical Medicine. In 2021, she was a member of WHO working groups on a global guidance framework for the responsible use of life sciences. That same year she was elected to the Governing Board of the International Science Council. In 2022, Baylis was awarded the Killam Prize for the Humanities.  

  • Jesse Bloom

    Jesse Bloom is a professor at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center and an Investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. His lab uses a combination of experiments and computation to study the evolution of viruses such as influenza and SARS-CoV-2. A major focus of his research is to use high-throughput approaches to define which viral mutations can affect sensitivity to antibodies. The goal is to use these insights to better understand viral evolution and design vaccines.

  • Samuel Bonti-Ankomah

    Dr. Samuel Bonti-Ankomah joined the Public Health Agency of Canada as the Director of the Office of Biosafety Programs and Planning at the Centre for Biosecurity in 2021. Before that, he spent over 15 years as a chief economist and advisor at Agriculture and Agri-food Canada, where he managed research to inform policy and regulatory development. Dr. Bonti-Ankomah also spent some time working at the Treasury Board Secretariat where he provide advise to several government departments on analysis of their regulatory proposals. Before joining the federal government, Dr. Bonti-Ankomah spent sometime teaching at McGill University in Montreal Canada. He holds a BSc Degree in Agricultural science and a PhD in Resource and Environmental Economics. 

  • Rocco Casagrande

    Dr. Rocco Casagrande is a founder and chair of the board of Gryphon Scientific, a life sciences consultancy. With a degree from Cornell in biology and chemistry and an MIT PhD in biology, Dr. Casagrande applies quantitative and systematic analysis to tackle daunting problems to manage scientific risks. The work of Dr. Casagrande and his team have formed the basis of the US Government’s and WHO’s policies on biosecurity and biosafety, including the US policy on the oversight on research on pathogens with pandemic potential and the design and operations of high containment laboratories. Currently, Dr. Casagrande is focused on generating data to inform biorisk management and improve biosafety in containment laboratories.

  • Alex Demarsh

    Alex Demarsh is a biosecurity consultant and former VP Data Science at BlueDot.global, a private epidemic intelligence public benefit company. He has led teams at the intersection of risk assessment, indicator and event-based health surveillance, strategic intelligence, forecasting, data science, and data engineering. 

  • Katherine Eban

    Katherine Eban, an investigative journalist, is a Vanity Fair contributing editor and Andrew Carnegie fellow. Her reporting on generic drug fraud, gun trafficking, coercive CIA interrogations, and COVID-19’s origins has won international attention and numerous awards, including from the National Association of Science Writers, the Overseas Press Club, and Investigative Reporters & Editors. Her 2019 book, Bottle of Lies: The Inside Story of the Generic Drug Boom was a New York Times bestseller. A Rhodes Scholar educated at Brown University and Oxford University, she lives in New York with her husband, two daughters, and Newfoundland dog Romeo. 

  • Adedeji (Ade) Ebo

    Adedeji (Ade) Ebo is currently director and deputy to the high representative, UN Office for Disarmament Affairs (UNODA). He was previously chief of the conventional arms branch, UNODA. He was the pioneer chief of the Security Sector Reform (SSR) Unit in the Office of Rule of Law and Security Institutions from 2008 to March 2020 when he initially joined UNODA. Ebo has also served as the director of political affairs in the UN Office for West Africa and Sahel (UNOWAS); and director of political affairs, UN Operation in Côte d’Ivoire. Ebo is also a visiting professor at the School of Global Affairs, Kings College, University London. His latest publication is The United Nations and Security Sector Reform: Policy and Practice (co-edited with Prof Heiner Hanggi), Lit Verlag, 2020. 

  • George Gao

    George Fu Gao is a member (academician) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), international member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences (NAS) and foreign membership of the U.K. Royal Society (RS). He also serves as vice president, National Natural Science Foundation of China, and professor of Institute of Microbiology, CAS. Gao obtained his DPhil degree from Oxford University, UK and did his postdoc work in both Oxford University and Harvard University. His researches focus on pathogen microbiology and immunology. Gao is a leading scientist in the field of virology and immunology in China and worldwide, and he has long been engaged in the research of transmission of pathogenic microorganisms.

  • Asha George

    Asha George is the executive director of the Bipartisan Commission on Biodefense and a member of the Bulletin’s Science and Security Board. George served in the US House of Representatives as a senior professional staffer and subcommittee staff director at the House Committee on Homeland Security in the 110th and 111th Congress. George also served on active duty in the US Army as a military intelligence officer and a paratrooper. She is a decorated Desert Storm Veteran. She holds a BA in Natural Sciences from Johns Hopkins University, a MS in Public Health from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and a Doctorate in Public Health from the University of Hawaii at Manoa. She is also a graduate of the Harvard University National Preparedness Leadership Initiative. 

  • Ameenah Gurib-Fakim

    Gurib-Fakim served as the 6th and first female president of the Republic of Mauritius (2015-2018). Prior to that, she has been the managing director of the Centre International de Développement Pharmaceutique (CIDP) Research and Innovation as well as Professor of Organic Chemistry with an endowed chair at the University of Mauritius. Since 2001, she has served successively as Dean of the Faculty of Science and Pro Vice Chancellor. She has also worked at the Mauritius Research Council as Manager for Research. Ms Gurib-Fakim earned a BSc in Chemistry from the University of Surrey and a PhD from the University of Exeter, UK.

  • Ravindra Gupta

    Ravi Gupta is professor of clinical microbiology at Cambridge University. Gupta has worked in HIV drug resistance both at molecular and population levels, and his work led to change in WHO treatment guidelines for HIV. He led the study demonstrating HIV cure in the ‘London Patient’ – the world’s only living HIV cure. During the COVID-19 pandemic, Gupta has deployed his expertise in RNA virus genetics and biology to report early evidence for immune escape of SARS-CoV-2 within an individual. More recently Gupta defined the replication advantage of the Delta variant and the tropism shift and immune escape of Omicron. Gupta has advised the UK government on COVID-19 through SAGE and NERVTAG and in 2020 appeared in the list of 100 most influential people by TIME.

  • David Heymann

    David Heymann is a medical epidemiologist and professor of Infectious Disease Epidemiology at LSHTM. He was previously chair of Public Health England and led the Centre on Global Health Security at Chatham House (London). In 2003, he headed the WHO global response to SARS. Heymann was a member of the CDC (Atlanta) team to investigate the first Ebola outbreak in DRC. He has published over 250 peer reviewed articles and book chapters, is editor of the Control of Communicable Diseases Manual, and is an elected member of the UK Academy of Medical Sciences and the US National Academy of Medicine. In 2009 he was named an Honorary Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire for services to global health.

  • Shahid Jameel

    Dr. Shahid Jameel is the Sultan Qaboos bin Said Fellow at Oxford Centre for Islamic Studies and Research Fellow, Green Templeton College, University of Oxford. He serves as the Principal Investigator for the Centre's project on Public Health, Science and Technology in Muslim societies. Previously he was the director of the Trivedi School of Biosciences at Ashoka University. He was formerly head of the scientific advisory group to the Indian SARS-CoV-2 Genomics Consortia. Jameel is an elected fellow of all the three major Indian science academies. The Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, awarded him the Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Prize for Science and Technology, one of the highest Indian science awards, for his contributions to Medical Sciences in 2000.

  • Clare Jolly

    Clare Jolly is a professor at University College London. Her research is focussed on the cell biology of virus infection and virus-host interactions. Specifically, her lab seeks to understand how pandemic HIV-1 and SARS-CoV-2 hijack host cells to successfully replicate while avoiding antiviral defences. During the pandemic, Jolly applied her expertise in working with HIV-1 at high-containment and pivoted to SARS-CoV-2 research. Working with a team of UK and international collaborators, her group discovered mechanism of innate immune sensing of SARS-CoV-2 by human cells, and showed how the Alpha variant evolved enhanced innate immune evasion, linking adaptation to host with variant dominance, and genotype to phenotype. Jolly obtained her BSc (Hons) and PhD from the University of Melbourne, Australia.

  • Gregory Koblentz

    Gregory D. Koblentz, PhD, MPP is an associate professor and director of the Biodefense Graduate Program at George Mason University’s Schar School of Policy and Government. Dr. Koblentz is co-director of the Global BioLabs Initiative which is dedicated to strengthening global biorisk management. He is a member of the Scientist Working Group on Biological and Chemical Security at the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation and the Security Working Group of the Engineering Biology Research Consortium. His research and teaching focus on understanding the causes and consequences of the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and the impact of emerging technologies on international security.

  • Jens Kuhn

    Jens Kuhn is a principal at Tunnell Government Services (TGS), Bethesda, MD, USA, tasked as one of two principal scientists and the director of virology (contractor) at the NIH/NIAID/DCR/Integrated Research Facility at Fort Detrick (IRF-Frederick), a biosafety level 4 (BSL-4) facility in Frederick, MD, USA. Dr. Kuhn specializes in highly virulent viral human and animal pathogens. He is the author of “Filoviruses: A Compendium of 40 Years of Epidemiological, Clinical, and Laboratory Studies” (Vienna: Springer, 2008) and co-author of “The Soviet Biological Weapons Program—A History” (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2012), and he has studied and worked in Germany, Italy, Malta, Russia, South Africa, and South Korea.

  • Filippa Lentzos

    Dr Filippa Lentzos is a reader (associate professor) in Science & International Security at King’s College London, where she is jointly appointed in the Department of War Studies and the Department of Global Health & Social Medicine. She is also an Associate Senior Researcher at the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), and a Non-Resident Scholar at the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies (CNS). Lentzos serves as the Chair of the WHO Technical Advisory Group on Responsible Use of the Life Science and Dual use Research (TAG RULS DUR), a member of the UK Biosecurity Leadership Council,  a member of the WHO Health Security Interface – Technical Advisory Group (HSI-TAG), and as the NGO Coordinator for the Biological Weapons Convention.

  • Poh Lian Lim

    Poh Lian Lim is Director of the High-Level Isolation Unit, National Centre for Infectious Diseases Singapore, Head of the Travellers’ Health and Vaccination Clinic, Tan Tock Seng Hospital, and Senior Consultant with the Ministry of Health Singapore. Dr Lim’s extensive clinical and public health experience is in the areas of outbreak preparedness and response, emerging and novel pathogens, travel medicine, and vaccines. She has served on WHO’s GOARN Steering Committee and the UN Secretary General’s Global Health Crises taskforce, chaired the WHO Technical Advisory Group for the Health Security Interface, and currently chairs the Independent Allocation of Vaccines Group for the COVAX Facility.

  • Marc Lipsitch

    Marc Lipsitch is professor of epidemiology and founding director of the Center for Communicable Disease Dynamics at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. He speaks in his academic capacity, but for the record is also part-time detailed to the US CDC where he is director of science for the Center for Forecasting and Outbreak Analytics. His research focuses broadly on the impact of medical and public health interventions on pathogen populations and the consequences of these changes for human health. Lipsitch received a BA from Yale and a DPhil from the University of Oxford, followed by postdoctoral work in biology at Emory University and a period as a visiting scientist at CDC. He is a member of the American Academy of Microbiology and the US National Academy of Medicine.

  • Natasha Loder

    Natasha Loder is The Economist’s Health Editor. She covers a range of topics in medicine, technology, pharma, and science. She has won many awards for her work in news, features, and opinion. Her work frequently appears on the cover of The Economist. She also appears in podcasts and broadcasts on health related matters, such as The Economist's podcast "The Jab" and the BBC series "The Backlog" about the NHS. Between 2011 and 2014 she was a foreign correspondent in Chicago, covering the Midwest. She has been at the Economist since 2000, spending over a decade as a science correspondent where she predicted and covered, the rise of the private space industry. She is a judge on the John Maddox Prize. In her spare time, she draws cartoons.

  • Sandra Lopez-Verges

    López-Vergès is a Senior Researcher, Gorgas Memorial Institute / Associated Professor at Universidad de Panamá Molecular epidemiology, cellular virology, immunology of viral diseases. Her research focuses on understanding the virological and immunological factors shaping the emergence of viruses and the severity of diseases associated with viral infection in humans. To answer these questions her research integrates clinical, virological, cellular, molecular and immunological approaches and a continued collaboration with researchers from other fields like medicine, epidemiology, entomology and statistics. The ultimate goal is to identify biomarkers of infection or disease severity that will be used to guide clinical management of patients, as well as to develop new effective treatments and vaccines.

  • Suzet McKinney

    Suzet McKinney is the principal and director of Life Sciences for Sterling Bay. She is also a member of the Bulletin’s Science and Security Board. She previously served as CEO and executive director of the Illinois Medical District. In 2020, Dr. McKinney was appointed by IL Governor JB Pritzker as Operations Lead for the State of Illinois’ Alternate Care Facilities, a network of alternate medical locations designed to decompress the hospital system during the COVID-19 pandemic. Dr. McKinney holds her Doctorate degree from the University of Illinois at Chicago School of Public Health, her BA from Brandeis University, and her MPH and certificates in Managed Care and Health Care Administration from Benedictine University in Lisle, IL.

  • John Mecklin

    John Mecklin is the editor-in-chief of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. Previously, he was editor-in-chief of Miller-McCune (subsequently renamed Pacific Standard), an award-winning national magazine that focused on research-based solutions to major policy problems. Beyond the publications he has edited and opined in, his writing has appeared in Foreign Policy, the Columbia Journalism Review, and the Reuters news service. Writers working at his direction have won many major journalism contests, including the George Polk Award, the Investigative Reporters and Editors certificate, and the Sidney Hillman Award for reporting on social justice issues. Mecklin holds a master in public administration degree from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government.

  • Stephanie Norlock

    Stephanie Norlock is the program officer at the International Federation of Biosafety Associations (IFBA) and aids in the development and facilitation of many of the IFBA's programs including the IFBA Global Mentorship Program and the IFBA Equity-Focused Coordinating Committee. Her portfolio focuses on the human elements of global biosafety and biosecurity, with emphasis on local biosafety and biosecurity professional communities and their impact on sustainable policy. Her present work in this regard includes publication of the outcomes of a South-to-South peer mentorship model for biosafety and biosecurity professionals, and the community-led development of global progress indicators in diversity, equity, and inclusion specific to biosafety and biosecurity.

  • Gustavo Palacios

    Dr. Gustavo Palacios is an expert in emerging infectious diseases, viral spillovers, and pathogen transmission. He is a graduate of the University of Buenos Aires, Argentina and is currently a full professor at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. As the director of the Center for Genome Sciences at the United States Army Medical Institute for Infectious Diseases, he generated critical tools, reagents, and research resources for infectious disease research against emerging, re-emerging, or genetically modified threats. His research at ISMMS prioritize developing comprehensive strategies for pathogen surveillance, studying inter-species transmission events, and characterizing superspreading events to understand human-to-human transmission.

  • Gerald Parker

    Gerald W Parker, DVM, PhD is the Associate Dean for Global One Health, Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, Texas A&M University. Prior to joining Texas A&M University, Parker held technical to executive army medical and federal leadership positions in biodefense, public health preparedness, and health security. He is a former commander of the United States Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Chemical and Biological Defense, and Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Preparedness Response.

  • David Relman

    David A. Relman is the Thomas C. and Joan M. Merigan professor in medicine and a professor of Microbiology & Immunology at Stanford University and chief of infectious diseases at the Veterans Affairs Palo Alto Health Care System. He is senior fellow at the Center for International Security and Cooperation at Stanford and previously served as the Center’s science co-director. Relman served as president of the Infectious Diseases Society of America and as chair of the Forum on Microbial Threats at the US National Academies of Science and is currently a member of the Defense Science Board for the US Department of Defense and the Science and Security Board of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. He was elected to the National Academy of Medicine in 2011 and the American Academy of Arts & Sciences in 2022.

  • Trevor Smith

    Trevor Smith is the senior program manager for Biological and Chemical Security in Canada's Weapons Threat Reduction Program. He led the successful effort to establish biosecurity as a priority for the Global Partnership Against the Spread of Weapons and Materials of Mass Destruction and spearheaded the launch of the Signature Initiative to Mitigate Biological Threats in Africa. He has overseen the delivery of more than $750 million in threat reduction programming in Africa, the Americas, Asia and Europe, and has led numerous innovations and multi-sectoral collaborations to prevent, detect and respond to all manner of CBRN threats.

  • Volker Thiel

    Volker Thiel has worked since the 1990s on basic aspects of coronavirus replication, immune responses, and virus-host interactions. Many of his studies included highly pathogenic coronaviruses such as SARS-CoV, MERS-CoV and SARS-CoV-2. Since 2014 he has led the virology division at the Institute of Virology and Immunology (IVI) in Bern and Mittelhäusern and served as chair of virology at the Vetsuisse Faculty, University of Bern. He is co-chair of the Multidisciplinary Center for Infectious Diseases (MCID), a strategic center of the University of Bern for pandemic preparedness. Thiel is a member of the National Swiss Biosafety Expert Committee and has served during the pandemic as a member of the Swiss National Science Task Force and the WHO Technical Advisory Group on SARS-CoV-2 Virus Evolution.

  • Emmanuelle Tuerlings

    Dr. Emmanuelle Tuerlings is a technical officer with the unit of emerging technologies, research prioritisation and support in the Research for Health Department, Science Division at the World Health Organization (WHO). She has experience in the governance of science and technology, especially in the field of dual-use research, biosecurity and global health security. She also consulted with international and non-governmental organizations on topics associated with dual use biological technologies and their governance. She holds a Master of Science and a Doctorate in Science and Technology Policy from the University of Sussex (United Kingdom).

  • Zeynep Tufekci

    Zeynep Tufekci is the Craig Newmark Professor of Journalism at Columbia University. Tufecki’s work examines the social implications of new technologies and science, such as artificial intelligence and big data, as well as complex societal challenges including the COVID-19 pandemic. Her writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Atlantic, The Washington Post, WIRED and Scientific American, among other publications. Her book Twitter and Tear Gas: The Power and Fragility of Networked Protest, published by Yale University Press in 2017, examined the competing innovations and weaknesses of digital tools in mass social movements.

  • Weiwen Zhang

    Dr. Weiwen Zhang is a distinguished professor of Synthetic Biology & Biochemical Engineering; director of Laboratory of Synthetic Microbiology, School of Chemical Engineering & Technology, and founding director of the Center for Biosafety Research and Strategy (CBRS) at Tianjin University of China. Dr. Zhang graduated from Chinese Academy of Sciences with a doctoral degree in microbiology. Prior to joining Tianjin University, Dr. Zhang was a senior principal investigator with the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory of the U.S. Department of Energy.  Dr. Zhang is currently chief scientist for the National Key R&D Research Program of China - Synthetic Biology program, and chief investigator for the Key Strategic Project of the Chinese Association for Science and Technology on dual-use biotechnology governance.