GALVESTON, Texas — Scott Weaver from The University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston was named as a Fellow by the National Academy of Inventors. Weaver will be inducted into the Academy on April 5, 2018 during the annual National Academy of Inventors Conference in Washington, D.C.

Weaver, globally recognized for his expertise in mosquito-borne diseases, is the director of the UTMB Institute for Human Infections and Immunity and scientific director of the Galveston National Laboratory. His work has been widely published and he holds nine patents in vaccine development.

He is the chairman of the Global Virus Network’s Zika Task force and co-chairman of the Chikungunya Task Force, which formed to speed the process to creating vaccines and much-needed diagnostic tools for these viruses, as well as to advocate for research efforts. Weaver is also the recipient of the Robert C. Gallo Award for Scientific Excellence from the GVN.

“This is an incredible honor, with selection being made by noted authorities from organizations including the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, and U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, as well as National Academy of Inventors Fellows,” said David Niesel, UTMB senior vice president and dean of the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences and chief research officer. “Dr. Weaver is one of our leading scientists who is making substantial contributions to emerging infectious disease research.”

The Academy stated that election to NAI Fellow status is the highest professional accolade bestowed to academic inventors who have demonstrated a prolific spirit of innovation in creating or facilitating outstanding inventions that have made a tangible impact on quality of life, economic development and welfare of society.

Weaver was presented the 2014 Walter Reed Medal from the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene in recognition of his distinguished accomplishments in the field of tropical medicine, especially in understanding the emergence of mosquito-borne viral diseases such as dengue, chikungunya and Zika.

Weaver is the principal investigator of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention-funded Western Gulf Center of Excellence for Vector-Borne Diseases, a five year, $10 million grant involving seven universities and several county and state public health institutions to improve preparedness and the ability to control vector-borne diseases in Texas and surrounding states.

“UTMB is extremely proud that Dr. Weaver has been recognized by the National Academy of Inventors,” said Dr. Danny Jacobs, UTMB executive vice president and provost, dean of the School of Medicine. “As leader of an internationally recognized research program, Dr. Weaver has developed innovative vaccine technologies that will likely improve our ability to fight the spread of dangerous viruses such as chikungunya.”