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Deborah S. Parris, Ph.D., Honored for Excellence in Medical Research

Dr. Parris is prepared to provide expert scientific background and advice to pharmaceutical corporations, grant agencies, investment entities, and related corporations interested in the future of anti-infective and anti-cancer therapies.

Columbus, OH, March 28, 2014 --( Dr. Deborah S. Parris, Professor of Molecular Virology, Immunology and Medical Genetics at The Ohio State University College of Medicine, was recently named a VIP member of Worldwide Branding. This special distinction honors individuals who have shown exceptional commitment to achieving personal and professional success.

Over the past four decades, Dr. Parris has distinguished herself as an authoritative figure in the fields of molecular virology and viral oncology. With her combined expertise in the fields of infectious diseases and cancer, Dr. Parris is prepared to provide expert scientific background and advice to pharmaceutical corporations, grant agencies, investment entities, and related corporations interested in the future of anti-infective and anti-cancer therapies.

Dr. Parris is especially noted for her work in herpes simplex virus (HSV) research. She has written a large number of peer-reviewed scientific publications and is also a skilled grant writer and peer-reviewer. Dr. Parris has been a member of the faculty and Comprehensive Cancer Center at The Ohio State University for more than three decades, and she is now a professor in the Department of Molecular Virology, Immunology, and Medical Genetics at the College of Medicine. Research currently being conducted in her laboratory focuses on the identification of targets for novel anti-herpesvirus therapeutics, mechanisms of HSV DNA polymerase fidelity, and suppression of RNA silencing by HSV and Ebola virus. Dr. Parris’ contributions to the fields of herpes virus research and DNA replication fidelity are recognized nationally and internationally. Her research has been consistently funded by the National Institutes of Health and nonprofit agencies, such as the American Cancer Society. In 2006, she was elected as a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the world’s largest general scientific society and publisher of “Science” magazine. She has received numerous other awards including a Fogarty Senior International Fellowship, a Wellcome International Travel Fellowship, the Excellence in Research and Teaching award at the OSU College of Medicine, the James Champion Award for distinguished service to the OSUComprehensiveCancerCenter and the Sanford Goldston Memorial Research Award.

Dr. Parris received a Ph.D. in microbiology from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. During her postdoctoral work at Baylor College of Medicine and HarvardMedicalSchool, she used a powerful new genetic approach to discover the gene for the herpes simplex virus DNA polymerase. This key protein is required for the virus to grow and is the target for the potent antiviral medicines used today to control many herpesvirus infections. She also discovered the gene for the herpes simplex virus polymerase processivity factor, another potential antiviral target. More recently she has been investigating the mechanisms of action of two essential proteins encoded by another human herpesvirus, human cytomegalovirus, as additional antiviral targets.

Dr. Parris’ career at OSU has also been accentuated by her leadership and organizational skills in promoting interdisciplinary research and teaching efforts across multiple colleges. These skills are exemplified by her prior role as Director of the Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology Graduate Program, in which she moved this provincial program to one that was truly intercollegiate, now serving faculty from six different colleges. Moreover, during her 12-year tenure as Director of the Comprehensive Cancer Center Molecular Biology/Cancer Genetics (MBCG) program, this highly visible program became the premier basic science program in the center, consistently scoring as “outstanding” in national peer reviews. As a result of this success, she was appointed to the Executive Board of the NCI-fundedOSUComprehensiveCancerCenter and served as the Associate Director for inclusion of women and minorities into clinical trials for seven years. Dr. Parris continues to provide leadership to the OSUComprehensiveCancerCenter as a member of the review committee for Pelotonia grant and fellowship applications. Pelotonia is the annual bicycling fund-raiser for the OSUComprehensiveCancerCenter, and Dr. Parris has cycled at least 100 miles in each of the five years since Pelotonia’s inception to assist in raising these funds.

Since 2006, Dr. Parris has served as President of the Board of Trustees of Ohio Cancer Research Associates, a nonprofit organization that provides seed grants to young investigators in Ohio. In addition to providing financial oversight of the organization, she facilitates fund-raising efforts and participates in the scientific review of grant applications to ensure that the most promising young investigators are given a chance to pursue innovative ideas in cancer research.

Please visit for more information on the research and publications of Dr. Parris.
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