Texas Biomed Staff

Jean L. Patterson

Chair and Scientist | Virology and Immunology
Phone: 210-258-9431
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Summary

Since the anthrax attacks in 2001, the U.S. government has been committed to developing countermeasures to potential biological weapons, now referred to as select agents. Texas Biomed has had a BSL4 maximum containment laboratory since 2000. Dr. Patterson’s laboratory has worked on the development of countermeasures against many select agents. Her group works to develop therapies and vaccines against naturally occurring pathogens that can cause sporadic but lethal outbreaks. She has helped develop three vaccines against Ebola, one with Emory University and one with Crucell pharmaceuticals and one with Bavarian Nordic, all are undergoing further studies.

The laboratory has also worked with the University of Maryland on the development of two vaccines against Lassa fever. Lassa fever is a hemorrhagic fever that causes serious outbreaks in West Africa; more than 500,000 persons are infected every year with approximately a 10 percent fatality rate and many different forms of lasting effects. The Department of Defense and NIH are committed to an Ebola and Marburg vaccine by 2015, Patterson’s group is working with them toward this goal.

Along with Ricardo Carrion, Jr., Ph.D., an assistant scientist in the department, she has developed the marmoset as a model for many infectious agents. The marmoset is a small non-human primate that is not readily available to researchers. Its size and behavior make it a much better model than other larger and more aggressive non-human primates. To date, Carrion and Patterson have utilized the marmoset for the model development of Eastern Equine Encephalitis virus, Lassa fever virus, Ebola and Marburg virus. The pathogenesis of these viral diseases in marmosets closely mimics that of human disease.

The BSL4 laboratory is utilized by the federal agencies, DOD, NIH, FDA and FBI for studies that require specific capabilities. It is also utilized by pharmaceutical companies for testing of new treatments and vaccines against all highly lethal and contagious pathogens.

Education

Doctoral Degree: Biology (1979)

University of Notre Dame Notre Dame, IN

Bachelor's Degree B.A. (1975)

Miami University Oxford, OH

Postdoctoral Work

1979 - 1980: NIH Postdoctoral Trainee, Department of Biochemistry, University of Wisconsin, Madison, Wisconsin.

1980 - 1981: NIH Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Biochemistry, University of Wisconsin, Madison, Wisconsin.

1981 - 1984: Research Associate, Department of Microbiology, University of Geneva Medical School, Geneva, Switzerland

Awards and Honors

2000-present    Member, Technology Area Review Assessment (TARA), Department of Defense
2000-present    Member, NIH COBRE (Center of Biomedical Research Excellence)
2008-present    NIH Blue Ribbon Panel
2008-present    Member, ASM Biodefense Program Committee
2009-present    Member, Institute of Medicine Report Review Committee on PPE Against Novel H1N1 Influenza A
2009-present    Advisor, U.S. Senate WMD Commission

Publications

A small nonhuman primate model for filovirus-induced disease

Carrion R Jr, Ro YT, Hoosien K, Ticer A, Brasky K, de la Garza M, Mansfield K, Patterson JL
Virology 420: 116-34, 2011
PubMed ID: 21959017

An electronic inventory system designed to aid compliance with the National Select Agents Registry Program

Griffiths A, Carrion R Jr, Miller JA, Sasinowska H, Sasinowski M, Patterson JL
App Biosa 16: 9-18, 2011