Dr. Rodney Russell announced incoming Vice Dean, Research and Graduate Studies

Aug 28th, 2023

Kelly Foss

Dr. Rodney Russell is the newest Vice Dean, Research and Graduate Studies in the Faculty of Medicine.

A Professor of virology and immunology in the Division of BioMedical Sciences, Dr. Russell obtained a Bachelor’s Degree in Biochemistry and a Master’s Degree in Medicine studying HIV under the supervision of Dr. Michael Grant at Memorial. Following that, he completed a PhD at McGill University with Drs. Mark Wainberg and Chen Liang, also in the field of HIV research.

Dr. Russell carried out postdoctoral training at the National Institutes of Health (USA) under the supervision of Drs. Suzanne Emerson and Robert Purcell where he switched his research focus to the hepatitis C virus.

In 2008, he returned to Memorial to establish a research program that now covers fundamental virology, viral immunology and viral pathogenesis, as well as antiviral drug discovery and development. His team is currently funded by the Canadian Institutes for Health Research to study virus-induced cell death and inflammasome activation, and the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada to develop novel virus imaging techniques.

Dr. Russell is the president of the Canadian Society for Virology and a member of the Canadian Network on Hepatitis C. He sits on editorial boards for Pathogens & Immunity, Frontiers in Immunology, Frontiers in Microbiology and Viruses, and he is the editor-in-chief of Viral Immunology. He was recently awarded the MUNMed Class of ’23 Silver Orator teaching award. Dr. Russell has also delivered over 150 media pieces via online, radio and television during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Dr. Russell takes over from Dr. Reza Tabrizchi, who held the Vice Dean role since its creation in November 2020. Dr. Tabrizchi, a Professor of pharmacology in the Division of BioMedical Sciences, was previously the Associate Dean, Research and Graduate Studies from 2012 to 2020.  Dr. Tabrizchi was a wonderful mentor and a dedicated administrator.  We thank Dr. Tabrizchi for his many years of senior leadership in the Faculty of Medicine.