December 1, 2015
Robert Garry, professor of microbiology and immunology, helped develop a 15-minute test for Ebola. (Photo by Paula Burch-Celentano)
Tulane University School of Medicine immunologist Robert Garry has been named one of Foreign Policy magazine’s 100 “Global Thinkers of 2015” for his groundbreaking work developing a rapid Ebola test.
Each year Foreign Policy selects the leading global thinkers whose contributions and work have changed lives and are shaping the world. Garry and a team of collaborators have been working more than a decade in Africa to fight viral hemorrhagic fevers like Ebola and Lassa virus. His group developed the world’s first rapid Ebola test, which the Food and Drug Administration approved for emergency use in West Africa earlier this year.
Instead of taking days for lab results, the new test, which was developed in conjunction with the Viral Hemorrhagic Fever Consortium, uses a drop of blood to deliver a diagnosis in as little as 15 minutes, allowing public health workers to isolate and treat patients immediately.
“I'm very pleased to be named one of Foreign Policy’s 100 Global Thinkers,” says Garry, professor of microbiology and immunology. “I take this honor as a tribute to the Tulane team and our colleagues across the United States and in Africa who responded with enormous innovation and, in some cases, with the ultimate personal sacrifice to the Ebola outbreak in West Africa.”
Among the ranks of this year’s list of honorees are individuals and organizations who have tackled climate change despite a poor country’s economic limitations; a pop singer who has challenged the Islamic State with verses; inventors who have created an iPhone app that serves as eyes for the blind; and a book with pages that clean dirty water. There are also those who have risked their lives to document the terrors of living under the Islamic State; advocates who gave voices to individuals silenced for being gay or transgender; and scientists who developed some of the first tools to combat Ebola.
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