Prior to his appointment as chief scientific officer and principal investigator at Vaccine & Gene Therapy Institute of Florida (VGTI Florida®), Rafick-Pierre Sékaly, Ph.D. served as scientific director of basic research and strategic planning and director of the Laboratory of Microbiology and Immunology for the University of Montreal Hospital Centre’s Research Centre. He was also scientific director for the National Laboratory of Immune Monitoring, collaboration between the University of Montreal and MDS Pharma. In addition, he served as director of INSERM Unit 743 in Human Immunology, a unit of the Institut National de la Santé et de la Recherche Médicale, France’s major funding organization.
Dr. Sékaly has extensive expertise in system biology studies of the human immune response to vaccines, chronic viral infections and immune therapies. Specifically, his group is among the world’s leaders in HIV vaccine development as well as the generation of novel approaches for HIV and cancer vaccines. His work has resulted in the publication of more than 280 articles in scientific journals. His studies have also resulted in the issuance of 20 patents. In addition, the Sékaly lab has received several prestigious research grants from the Canadian Government, the United States’ National Institutes of Health and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
Dr. Sékaly obtained his Ph.D. in Biochemistry at the Université of Lausanne in 1984 and went on to perform a postdoctoral fellowship, from 1984 to 1987, on immunogenetics and molecular biology of major histocompatibility complex molecules.
As Founder and Scientific Director of the CANVAC Network of Centre of Excellence, as well as Scientific Director of Inserm Unit on Human Immunology and now in his position at VGTI Florida, Dr. Sékaly has over the years strived to improve our quality of life by using novel technologies and a multidisciplinary approach in order to develop vaccines for the prevention and treatment of chronic diseases like AIDS, hepatitis C and cancer.