Hepatitis B Foundation

Nobel Laureate Dr. Baruch Blumberg Joins Hepatitis B Foundation As First “Distinguished Scholar”

Finding a cure for hepatitis B to complete the circle of discovery


Doylestown, PA -- (ReleaseWire) -- 02/02/2007 --The Hepatitis B Foundation is proud to announce that Nobel Laureate Baruch Blumberg, M.D., Ph.D., has joined the organization as the first “Hepatitis B Foundation Trustee Distinguished Scholar.”

Beginning January 2007, Dr. Blumberg will spend several days a month at the Hepatitis B Foundation, a national nonprofit organization dedicated to finding a cure for hepatitis B, meeting with Foundation researchers and public health professionals to help guide them in their valuable work. The Foundation is located in the new Pennsylvania Biotechnology Center in Bucks County (Doylestown), Pa., which the Foundation created to accelerate its research progress.

Dr. Blumberg received the Nobel Prize in medicine in 1976 for his discovery of the hepatitis B virus and invention of the first vaccine against hepatitis B. By joining the Hepatitis B Foundation, he has chosen a valuable opportunity to contribute to the completion of his circle of discovery - finding a cure for hepatitis B.

“I greatly admire the Hepatitis B Foundation and its mission. It is a world-class research organization with one of the largest concentrations of scientists working on the problem of hepatitis B. This is an exciting time for hepatitis B research and I embrace the Foundation’s goal of eradicating the disease,” said Dr. Blumberg.

Dr. Blumberg has been involved with the Hepatitis B Foundation since the very beginning when Foundation Co-founder Dr. Timothy Block first visited him in 1991 to complete a sabbatical research fellowship with him while Dr. Blumberg was Master of Balliol College at the University of Oxford. During the past 15 years, Dr. Blumberg has served on the Foundation’s Medical and Scientific Advisory Board and has been an important ally in supporting its international research and public health priorities.

The past eight years of Dr. Blumberg’s professional life, however, turned from the human body to astro-bodies. He was asked to serve as the first director of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration Astrobiology Institute at NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, California, and later as senior advisor to the administrator of Biology at NASA in Washington, D.C. He also serves as the Senior Advisor to the President of Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia, Pa.

To advance its mission, the Hepatitis B Foundation has identified three major priorities for the next several years: to ensure that every American with chronic hepatitis B is counted so that appropriate public health attention and funding is provided to improve the care and treatment of those affected; to make the link between hepatitis B and liver cancer clearer in the minds of policy makers and the general public to increase early screening and treatment options for this devastating consequence of chronic hepatitis B infections; and to promote a better understanding of the risks and care of hepatitis B co-infections with other diseases such as HIV and hepatitis C.

“Working with Dr. Blumberg is a privilege and an honor,” said Dr. Timothy Block, Foundation President. “He is a scientist with extraordinary vision and commitment to the problem of hepatitis B and his presence will inspire and guide the Foundation as it seeks to fulfill its mission.” The Hepatitis B Foundation is excited to have Dr. Blumberg’s professional attention return to hepatitis B as its “Distinguished Scholar.”

About the Hepatitis B Foundation
The Hepatitis B Foundation is the only national nonprofit organization solely dedicated to finding a cure and improving the quality of life for those affected with hepatitis B worldwide through research, education and patient advocacy. The Foundation is located in the new Pennsylvania Biotechnology Center of Bucks County, which it created to accelerate its research progress. For more information, visit www.hepb.org or call (215) 489-4900.