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Michael Busch, MD, PhD

Michael Busch, MD, PhD, is vice president for research and scientific affairs of the Blood Centers of the Pacific, San Francisco, California, and of Blood Systems, Inc., a national network of over 30 community blood centers throughout the United States, as well as adjunct professor of laboratory medicine at the University of California, San Francisco. Dr. Busch earned his MD degree in 1982 and PhD degree (on feline leukemia virus) in 1985 at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles.

He has won many awards, and is a member of several U.S., Canadian, and European task forces and special government bodies concerned with the safety of the blood supply, as well as many national and international medical associations. He directs several national multicenter research studies, and his laboratory has an international reputation in the fields of viral safety and transfusion medicine, hosting visiting scholars from around the world. His research interests include the epidemiology, natural history, pathogenesis, and laboratory evaluation of transfusion-associated viral infections; immunological consequences of transfusion, including graft-vs-host disease, donor leukocyte proliferation, and development of chimerism as opposed to enhanced tolerance to donated tissue; and mechanisms of viral latency, disease, and viral reactivation following transfusion or other immunological stimulus. He has most recently been instrumental in the review, optimization, and implementation of new nucleic amplification technology for mass screening of blood donations in the U.S.

Researchers in his laboratory are pursuing investigations in identifying and genetic sequencing of HIV-1 subtypes and quasispecies; measuring T-cell expansion during primary infection with simian immunodeficiency virus and following vaccination with canarypox vectors; effects of irradiation, storage, and manipulation on donated blood; and development/application of new "sensitive/less-sensitive" assay strategies for distinguishing recent versus longstanding HIV infection.


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