Biographies - E. coli O157

Patricia M. Griffin, MD
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Dr. Patricia M Griffin is Chief of the CDC’s Enteric Diseases Epidemiology Branch. She attended medical school and trained in internal medicine at the University of Pennsylvania; she trained in gastroenterology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and in epidemiology through CDC’s Epidemic Intelligence Service.

Dr. Griffin oversaw CDC’s role in investigations of outbreaks caused by bacterial enteric pathogens for 20 years. She oversees U.S. surveillance and studies of sporadic illnesses caused by enteric bacteria including Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli such as O157:H7. Her branch creates models to estimate the true number of US illnesses, hospitalizations, and deaths due to contaminated food, and the percentage due to each food category.

Dr. Griffin is an author of over 225 peer-reviewed publications. She received CDC’s Shepard Award for the best scientific paper in 1990, the US Public Health Service Distinguished Service Medal in 2009, and CDC’s Shepard Lifetime Scientific Achievement Award in 2015. She is an adjunct professor in the Emory University Rollins School of Public Health, a member of the International VTEC/STEC (Shiga toxin-producing E. coli) Symposium Steering Committee, a fellow of the Infectious Diseases Society of America, and a member of the American Epidemiological Society.

Robert Tauxe, MD, MPH
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Dr. Robert Tauxe is Director of the Division of Foodborne, Waterborne and Environmental Diseases at CDC’s National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases (NCEZID). The Division monitors the frequency of these infections in the United States, investigates outbreaks, and develops strategies to reduce the disease, disability and deaths that they cause.

Dr. Tauxe graduated from Yale University in 1975, and received his medical degree from Vanderbilt Medical School. He completed an internal medicine residency, trained at the CDC in the Epidemic Intelligence Service, and joined CDC staff in 1985.

His interests include bacterial enteric diseases, epidemiology and pathogenesis of infectious diseases, epidemiologic and clinical consequences of bacterial genetic exchange, antimicrobial use and resistance to antimicrobial agents, and teaching epidemiologic methods. His faculty appointments include the School of Public Health and the Department of Biology at Emory University, Atlanta.

Dr. Tauxe has written/co-authored 290 journal articles, letters and book chapters.

Bala “Swami” Swaminathan, PhD
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Dr. Swaminathan serves as the Executive Vice-President of IHRC, Inc. providing insight into all aspects of the Company’s operational activities, and working to ensure continued organizational excellence and the fulfillment of IHRC’s strategic vision. Prior to serving as the Executive Vice-President, he served as IHRC’s Chief Operating Officer since its inception in 2007.

Dr. Swaminathan has over 30 years of experience in institutions of higher learning and the federal government and is internationally recognized as an expert on laboratory aspects of infectious diseases and as an effective manager/coordinator of public health programs. Prior to retiring from the CDC in 2006 after 20 years of federal service, he served in various positions including Senior Advisor for Laboratory Science in the Division of Foodborne Waterborne and Environmental Diseases, and Chief of Foodborne and Diarrheal Diseases Laboratory Section. He established the PulseNet network at CDC. Dr. Swaminathan holds a Bachelor of Science Degree, a Master’s degree, and a Ph.D.

Beth P. Bell, MD, MPH
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Dr. Beth P. Bell is the former director of the National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases (NCEZID). Prior to her recent retirement, she was responsible for providing leadership and direction for NCEZID’s world-class laboratories, which continue to develop new tests, vaccines, and since the 2014 launch of Advanced Molecular Detection, next-generation sequencing to enable faster diagnosis and more effective prevention and control of infectious diseases. Dr. Bell led NCEZID’s response to several major infectious disease threats, including the largest Ebola epidemic in history affecting multiple countries in West Africa, chikungunya spreading throughout the Americas, a multistate outbreak of fungal meningitis that exposed thousands of patients who had received contaminated steroid injections, the second-largest outbreak of West Nile virus disease in the United States, the worst cholera outbreak in recent history that caused more than 8,000 deaths in Haiti, and dozens of outbreaks of foodborne disease that occur each year. She joined CDC in 1992 as an Epidemic Intelligence Service officer assigned to the Washington State Department of Health, where she was the lead officer in the seminal investigation of Escherichia coli O157:H7 infections from contaminated hamburgers. Dr. Bell received a BA from Brown University, an MD from Yale University, and an MPH from the University of Rochester School of Medicine. She is a Fellow of the Infectious Diseases Society of America, the American Academy of Family Medicine, and the American Academy of Preventive Medicine.

Page last reviewed: October 11, 2017
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