(Kansas City, Mo. – Feb. 5, 2021) In an extraordinary step demonstrating commitment to scientific excellence, Kansas City University (KCU) recently added three renowned microbiologists to its faculty roster. The team is comprised of two infectious disease experts and a virologist, all researchers at MRIGlobal. This results from the expanded partnership between KCU and MRIGlobal.
Gene Olinger, PhD, MBA is an infectious disease expert who was part of a team that developed the first successful antibody treatment for the Ebola virus. He is internationally recognized as a subject matter expert in virology, immunology, biorisk, biosecurity, and biosafety with an emphasis on viral hemorrhagic fevers.
Carl Gelhaus, PhD, is also an experienced infectious disease expert who managed an emergency Ebola diagnostic laboratory during an outbreak in Sierra Leone. He has lectured on topics that include transplantation, preclinical drug research, and infectious disease. Dr. Gelhaus has mentored two master’s students from Kansas City University on research projects covering vaccine development for tularemia and disease model of Zika virus infection.
Shelton Bradrick, PhD, is a molecular virologist with more than 20 years of experience researching positive-strand RNA viruses including hepatitis C virus, Zika virus, dengue virus and SARS-CoV-2 (which causes the disease COVID-19).
The addition of this team will equip KCU students as they train to become physicians, scientists or other health care providers who will impact patients by treating and researching health care threats such as COVID-19.
“KCU is thrilled to offer this caliber of education, especially at this critical time,” said Robert White, PhD, dean of the College of Biosciences. “The addition of these distinguished scientists will benefit our students and the communities KCU graduates will serve throughout their careers.”
Microbiology, the study of all living organisms such as bacteria, viruses, fungi, prions protozoa and algae is a core element of all science and medical curriculums. More microbiologists will be needed to conduct basic science research in the effort to prevent future pandemics, avoid environmental disasters and to ensure public health.
MRIGlobal addresses some of the world’s greatest threats and challenges. Founded in 1944 as an independent, non-profit organization, we perform contract research for government, industry, and academia. Our customized solutions in national security and defense and health include research and development capabilities in clinical research support, infectious disease and biological threat agent detection, global biological engagement, in vitro diagnostics, and laboratory management and operations. MRIGlobal is one of two partners in the Alliance for Sustainable Energy, LLC, which manages and operates the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) in Golden, Colorado, for the U.S. Department of Energy. For more information, visit mriglobal.org.
Elizabeth Alex, Public Affairs Director, (816) 654-7032, ealex@KansasCity.edu