Ravichandran to Chair Microbiology
Kodi S. Ravichandran, PhD, to the position of Chair of the Department of Microbiology.
From the Dean:
I am very pleased to announce the appointment of Kodi S. Ravichandran, PhD, to the position of Chair of the Department of Microbiology. Dr. Ravichandran, the Harrison Distinguished Professor of Microbiology, joined the department in 1996 and was appointed Professor of Microbiology in 2004. He has served as Director of the Center for Cell Clearance since 2008.
Dr. Ravichandran’s research focuses on apoptotic cell clearance and intracellular signaling pathways regulating T and B lymphocyte function. The daily clearance of billions of apoptotic (dead) cells is fundamentally important in maintaining health. Failure to promptly and efficiently clear apoptotic cells can lead to chronic inflammation, autoimmunity and developmental defects. Dr. Ravichandran’s laboratory addresses how the dying cells are recognized by phagocytes, ingested, and removed without harm to the host. His laboratory is also addressing how adapter proteins and chemokine receptors regulate specific checkpoints during T cell development in the thymus.
After receiving a degree in Veterinary Medicine from Madras Veterinary College, Dr. Ravichandran received his PhD in Molecular and Cell Biology from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst in 1992. He performed his post-doctoral work in the Division of Pediatric Oncology at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston. After a year as Instructor at Harvard Medical School, Dr. Ravichandran joined the faculty at UVA.
Dr. Ravichandran has authored more than 90 articles in peer-reviewed journals, including multiple publications in the top biomedical journals such as Cell, Nature, Science, Nature Immunology and Nature Cell Biology. Dr. Ravichandran’s laboratory has been highly productive over the years here at UVA, including four articles published in Nature in the past 12 months. He serves on many NIH review panels and other granting agencies, and also serves as a reviewer for numerous biomedical journals. He has been an Invited or Plenary Speaker in many national and international meetings and is a recognized world leader in the fields of apoptosis and cell clearance.
Dr. Ravichandran has also distinguished himself with his leadership in research and teaching at UVA. Dr. Ravichandran is the Program Director of the Immunology T32 Training Grant and oversaw its successful competitive renewal in 2010. He was also honored with the Robert J. Kadner Mentoring Award for graduate and post-doctoral training.
I wish to express my sincere thanks to the members of the search committee, led by Rick Horwitz, PhD, for their committed and diligent work in identifying from a National Search the best candidate to head the Department of Microbiology.
I also want to take this opportunity to sincerely thank Dr. Tom Parsons, who is stepping down after 17 years at the helm, for his enormous service and the outstanding stewardship of the Department of Microbiology.
Steven T. DeKosky, MD, FACP
Vice President and Dean