Maria Elena Bottazzi, PhD, is the Associate Dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine, Professor of Pediatrics and Co-director of Texas Children’s Hospital Center for Vaccine Development at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas. She is an internationally-recognised vaccinologist and global health advocate for neglected tropical diseases (NTDs). With more than two decades of experience applying the product development partnership (PDP) model, she has built sustainable biotechnology capacity and has successfully transitioned several NTD vaccines from bench up to phase 2 clinical trials.
As a global thought-leader, she has received national and international highly regarded awards, has more than 120 scientific papers and participated in more than 200 conferences worldwide. She is a Fellow of the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (ASTMH), the Hedwig van Ameringen Executive Leadership in Academic Medicine (ELAM), the Leshner Leadership Institute Public Engagement (Infectious Diseases) of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and a Sr. Fellow of the American Leadership Forum (ALF).
Currently, she is an Emerging Leader in Health and Medicine Scholar of the National Academies of Medicine and committee member to the National Academy of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine for the Stronger Food and Drug Regulatory Systems Abroad consensus study.
Dr. Bottazzi was born in Italy and raised in Honduras where she obtained her bachelor’s degree in Microbiology and Clinical Chemistry from the National Autonomous University of Honduras. She then obtained a doctorate in Molecular Immunology and Experimental Pathology from the University of Florida and post-doctoral training in Cellular Biology completed at University of Miami and Pennsylvania. Her academic career started at the George Washington University in Washington DC where she resided for 11 years prior to relocating to Houston in 2011.