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Jeffrey A. Gelfand, M.D.

Principal Investigator

Dr. Gelfand is a Physician in the Infectious Diseases Division at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) and Professor of Medicine, Part Time at Harvard Medical School. He is a Senior Scientist in the MGH Vaccine and Immunotherapy Center. He is also Adjunct Faculty in the Wellman Center for Photomedicine at MGH. Most recently, his research interests have focused on vaccines and immuno-therapeutics for infectious diseases and cancer, as well as light- based therapies. At MGH he developed a monoclonal antibody/vaccine fusion targeting ovarian cancer, and a “self-assembling vaccine” platform to enable rapid vaccine creation for emerging infectious diseases; the latter work was funded by DARPA and is now the basis for ongoing vaccines. He holds 9 patents for such therapies. He initiated the first published clinical investigations on the use of lasers as a vaccine adjuvant. This in turn led him to explore other light-based therapies, including photodynamic therapy of bacterial infections, for which he currently holds two Defense Department grants.

Prior Experience

Before coming to MGH in 1999, from 1994 to 1998 Dr. Gelfand was Professor and Chairman of the Department of Medicine of Tufts University School of Medicine. He has conducted laboratory and clinical research in immunology, inflammation and infection for over 40 years. He was part of the team that developed the treatment of hereditary angioedema with danazol, also first using that drug in autoimmune thrombocytopenia. In 2008 he was elected a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) “for distinguished contributions to clinical immunology and vaccine development’’

Outside of VIC

Since 2014, Dr. Gelfand has been Chairman of the Mass General Brigham Institutional Biosafety Program. He was the Founder and Director of the MGH/CIMIT Program on Biodefense and served as the PI of a US State Department grant to redirect Russian biological warfare scientists (2004–2007).

Academic Credentials