Peter Piot receives Canada Gairdner Global Health Award
25 March 2015
Updated 30 October 2015
The award recognises scientific advancement that has made a significant impact on health in the developing world. Prof Piot was awarded for his work on the Ebola virus, his many contributions to HIV/AIDS research and his extraordinary leadership in the global response to the HIV/AIDS epidemic, especially in Africa.
Prof Piot is a co-discoverer of the Ebola virus and its modes of transmission and its epidemiology. His pioneering work on HIV/AIDS in Africa revealed a major heterosexual HIV epidemic, established much of the knowledge of the clinical manifestations, natural history and epidemiology of HIV in Africa, including the first studies showing the effectiveness of HIV prevention in high risk populations. He also identified several original risk determinants for HIV transmission. His team was the first to document the association between tuberculosis and HIV in Africa, and the wide genetic diversity of HIV-1 in Africa, as well as a related immunodeficiency virus in chimpanzees.
By playing a leading role in bringing the AIDS epidemic to the forefront of global attention, Prof Piot raised international commitments to its funding and built scientifically grounded responses to its control and treatment. His team's work on the strong association of tuberculosis and HIV in Africa, followed by clinical and therapeutic studies, led to new guidelines for managing tuberculosis in Africa. His studies on the prevention of HIV infection among high risk populations were again among the first in Africa, and demonstrated that such prevention is possible.
Professor Sir Brian Greenwood received the Gairdner Global Health Award in 2012 for his work on malaria, meningitis and pneumonia.