COL Nelson L. Michael, MD, PhD, USA

Hero of Military Medicine

COL Nelson L. Michael, MD, PhD, USA

Honoree Tribute Video

Nelson L. Michael, M.D., Ph.D is the Director of the U.S. Military HIV Research Program (MHRP) at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research (WRAIR), an international HIV vaccine research program that successfully integrates HIV/AIDS prevention, care and treatment.

Dr. Michael, a Colonel in the United States Army Medical Corps, entered his Army service in 1989 in WRAIR's Department of Vaccine Research, Division of Retrovirology, and later served as the Chief, Department of Molecular Diagnostics and Pathogenesis.

Dr. Michael was appointed Director of MHRP in January 2006, and guided MHRP through the completion of the RV144 HIV prime-boost vaccine study. This clinical trial, an international collaboration that involved more than 16,000 Thai volunteers, provided the world’s first demonstration that a preventive HIV vaccine was possible.

Dr. Michael's research interests include HIV molecular pathogenesis and host genetics, HIV clinical research, and HIV vaccine development. He is a Professor of Medicine, Uniformed Services University and is a Diplomat, American Board of Internal Medicine. He serves as a peer reviewer of many scientific journals and is author, coauthor of more than 180 scientific publications, and eight textbooks. Honors include Army Commendation Medal (1992, 1996), Army Achievement Medal (1996), and Army Meritorious Service Medal (2004, 2010).

Dr. Michael currently serves on President Obama’s Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues, the Vaccine Research Center Scientific Advisory Working Group (NIAID, NIH), Office of AIDS Research Advisory Committee (NIH), AIDS Research Advisory Committee (NIAID, NIH), AIDS Vaccine Research Working Group (DAIDS, NIAID, and NIH), Center for HIV/AIDS Vaccine Immunology Scientific Advisory Board, Office of the Global AIDS Coordinator Scientific Steering Committee, the Scientific Committee of the Global HIV AIDS Vaccine Enterprise and the PEPFAR Scientific Advisory Board.

Dr. Michael graduated summa cum laude from University of California, Los Angeles in 1979 with a degree in biology and from Stanford University with M.D. and Ph.D. (cancer biology) degrees in 1986. He trained in internal medicine at Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts General Hospital from 1986-1989.