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2020 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine awardee. Speaker Harvey Alter’s work has aided in the development of blood donor screening programs, which have reduced the possibility of hepatitis zero transmission via blood transfusion. Organizations book Harvey Alter to learn about the future of hepatitis.
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Keynote speaker Harvey Alter is a virologist, researcher, as well as a physician who received the 2020 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine with Michael Houghton and Charles M. Rice. He won the award thanks to his contributions to the hepatitis C virus. His work has aided in the development of blood donor screening programs, which have reduced the possibility of hepatitis zero transmission via blood transfusion.
Dr. Alter is a Senior Scholar in the Department of Transfusion Medicine at the National Institutes of Health Clinical Center. His Nobel prize co-awardee, Michael Houghton, is a researcher at the University of Alberta in Canada. The second co-awardee, Charles M. Rice, is a professor of virology at Rockefeller University in New York City.
During his time at the Clinical Center, speaker Harvey Alter became the first scientist that the National Academy of Sciences elected. In addition, in 2000, he received the Clinical Lasker Award. The Institute of Medicine also elected him. Both of these scientific organizations are comprised of a relatively limited number of scientists from across the country.
After graduating from the University of Rochester Medical School, Dr. Harvey Alter went on to complete internal medicine training at Strong Memorial Hospital and the University Hospitals of Seattle.
Harvey Alter was the lead investigator on research that discovered non-A, non-B hepatitis, which today we call hepatitis C. In 2013, he also obtained the Canada Gairdner International Award. The award recognizes a scientist whose discoveries have had, or will possibly have, a substantial impact on health outcomes in developing countries.
Dr. Alter was a co-discoverer of the Australia antigen, which is critical in the detection of the hepatitis B virus. Furthermore, he was the driving force behind a project at the Clinical Center that resulted in the creation of a repository of blood samples that were used to investigate the causes of and minimize the chances of transfusion-associated hepatitis.
Alter’s research into the infectious dangers of blood transfusions continues. However, he is now concentrating on agents besides hepatitis viruses. Moreover, he is continuing to investigate the natural history and consequences of hepatitis C virus infection.
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