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ISIRV 2016 Opening Ceremonyv3Geoffrey Schild with award

An Extraordinary Award for a Lifetime of Influenza Research was awarded to Geoffrey Schild at the Options IX Conference in Chicago, August 2016.
The citation below was read in support of this presentation - the award was then presented to him at his home in Norway.

During his long distinguished career, Geoffrey Schild has been an inspiration to his many colleagues and to young scientists, enthusiastic about their interests and encouraging of their research endeavours. Not least in instigating the founding of isirv, he has displayed an eager commitment to communicating his profound interest in combatting infectious disease and influenza in particular.

Geoffrey’s interest in influenza was kindled by his early work in the mid-1960’s with Charles Stuart-Harris at Sheffield University on serological responses to influenza infection, which formed a basis for much of his subsequent contributions to our understanding of influenza and efforts for its control. During his time at the UK National Institute for Medical Research (NIMR, 1967-1975) he served as Director of the WHO World Influenza Centre and was instrumental in the development of a unified system of nomenclature for influenza viruses based on the antigenic subtypes of haemaglutinin and neuraminidase, and the development of the single-radial-immunodiffusion (SRID) influenza vaccine potency assay which remains the international gold standard.

His interests broadened on his move in 1975 to the UK National Institute for Biological Standards and Control (NIBSC) as Head of the Viral Products Division. As Director of the Institute, from 1985 to his retirement in 2002, he oversaw its transfer in 1987 from Hampstead to the new site in the countryside of South Mimms. Under his influence, NIBSC entered a new era of development of the scientific basis for the quality and safety of biologicals, with the provision of many key WHO International Standards and Reference materials for quality control of bacterial and viral vaccines and other immunologicals.

Geoffrey has served on many influential committees and executive boards, and as Director of the Medical Research Council Aids Directed Programme (1987-1992).

Geoffrey’s contribution has been recognised by Fellowships of the UK Academy of Medical Sciences, the Royal College of Physicians (London), the Royal College of Physicians (Edinburgh), the Royal College of Pathologists and the UK Institute of Biology, and by an Honorary Doctorate of Science from the University of Sheffield in 2002.

In 1993, Geoffrey Schild was awarded the honour of Commander of the British Empire (CBE) for Services to Science.


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