GEMS Research

People

Lauren Berner, MA
Project Administrator
Personal Website

Lauren Berner has project management experience in multiple international research projects, ranging from social sciences to the health sciences fields. She has experience in fiscal oversight and budget, project and materials management in both for-profit and non-profit settings. Ms. Berner is a Global Project Manager for the HIV/AIDS Program, Division of Infectious Diseases, at the University of Pittsburgh.

Valentina Cambiano, PhD
Modelling Team
Personal Website

Dr. Valentina has worked in design and analysis of HIV observational study research, in mathematical modelling of HIV epidemics and in cost effectiveness analyses. Dr. Cambiano is a Research Associate in the Department of Infection & Population Health at the Institute of Epidemiology & Health Care at University College London.

 

Rick Homan, PhD, MA, MS
Policy Team
Personal Website

Dr. Rick Homan is a scientist with extensive training and experience in evaluating the efficiency and effectiveness of health care delivery systems. Currently he is working on projects ranging from assessing the cost and effectiveness of service delivery interventions for family planning, reproductive health and HIV/AIDS to assessing the efficiency of HIV/AIDS service delivery in Zambia. Dr. Homan is a Health Economics Scientist in the Health Services Research Department at FHI 360.

Lisa Levy, MPH
Policy Team Lead

Lisa Levy has experience working on clinical trials that measure resistance to microbicides and pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) study products, including MTN-003 (VOICE), a Phase IIB randomized clinical trial that enrolled more than 5000 participants across South Africa, Zimbabwe, and Uganda. She also led MTN-015, an observational cohort study of women following HIV-1 seroconversion in a microbicide trials study. Ms. Levy is a Senior Clinical Research and Project Manager with Science Facilitation at FHI 360.

Kevin McCormick, PhD
Lab Team

Dr. Kevin McCormick is a Postdoctoral Research Associate in the Division of Infectious Diseases at the University of Pittsburgh.

John W. Mellors, MD
Project Director
Personal Website

Dr. John Mellors has studied HIV drug resistance for over 25 years and has made significant contributions to understanding mechanisms of HIV resistance, development and interpretation of resistance diagnostics, clinical significance and management of major and minor drug-resistant variants, and modeling of the potential impact of HIV drug resistance arising from antiretroviral therapy and pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) on therapeutic and preventive efficacy. Dr. Mellors is a tenured Professor of Medicine, Pathology, and Infectious Diseases and Microbiology, and Chief of the Infectious Diseases Division at the University of Pittsburgh.

Fumiyo Nakagawa, PhD
Modelling Team
Personal Website

Dr. Fumiyo Nakagawa has worked in statistical analyses of HIV observational studies and in mathematical modelling of European HIV epidemics. Dr. Nakagawa is a Research Assistant in the Department of Infection & Population Health at the Institute of Epidemiology & Health Care at University College London.

Urvi M. Parikh, PhD
Senior Project Advisor
Personal Website

Dr. Urvi Parikh has worked in the HIV/AIDS field for the past 18 years. She has expertise in virology and molecular biology in the context of clinical and translational research and her laboratory conducts endpoint validation for seroconverters from microbicide trials, viral load testing, HIV diagnostic testing and algorithm improvement, HIV standard genotyping and phenotyping on non-B subtypes, and sensitive resistance testing (allele-specific PCR). Dr. Parikh is the Associate Director of the Virology Core Microbicide Trials Network and an Assistant Professor of Medicine in the Division of Infectious Diseases at the University of Pittsburgh.

Kerri Penrose, MS

Kerri Penrose has over 10 years of experience designing, leading and conducting molecular biology/virology based projects.  She has served as a consultant in the development of a state of the art HIV-1 full-length reverse transcriptase genotypic assay that is now being employed as a standard HIV genotypic test for several labs.  Ms. Penrose is a Research Project Manager in the Division of Infectious Diseases at the University of Pittsburgh.

Jill Peterson, MPP
Monitoring & Evaluation Director

Jill Peterson has over 15 years of experience in research, program evaluation, and monitoring and evaluation (M&E).  She has overseen research projects evaluating the effectiveness of program interventions aimed to increase demand for and access to family planning and projects related conservation agriculture, food-for work, cash-for-work, and community garden activities. She has experience supervising staff and managing teams internationally. Ms. Peterson is the Team Lead for Monitoring & Evaluation and Operations Research on various projects at FHI 360.

Andrew Phillips, PhD
Modelling Team
Personal Website

Dr. Andrew Phillips has worked extensively in design and analysis of HIV observational study research as well as randomized trials and in simulation modelling and cost effectiveness evaluations. Dr. Phillips is a Professor of Epidemiology and Biostatistics in the Department of Infection & Population Health at the Institute of Epidemiology & Health Care at University College London.

Barbra A. Richardson, PhD, MS

Dr. Barbra Richardson has over 20 years of experience as a lead statistician on numerous HIV/STD clinical trials and observational studies.  These include studies of mother to child HIV transmission, microbicides for prevention of HIV and other STDs, HIV disease progression, correlates of HIV risk and acquisition, and HIV treatment studies. Barbra Richardson is Joint Member in the Vaccine and Infectious Disease Division at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Research Professor in the Department of Biostatistics and Adjunct Research Professor in the Department of Global Health at the University of Washington. 

Raquel Viana, PhD
Roll-out Team

Dr. Raquel Viana has over 7 years of experience in the HIV Drug Resistance field of study and is involved in several clinical trial networks in the field.  In her current role at Lancet/BARC-SA she is involved in routine testing procedures, assay implementation, overseeing of QC monitoring and implementation thereof once new assays are employed, costing and marketing of assays within Molecular Pathology and is part of the senior management tasked with overseeing all work carried out within the department.  Dr. Viana is a Senior Medical Scientist at Lancet Laboratories and BARC-SA. 

Carole Wallis, PhD, MSc
Senior Technical Advisor
Personal Website

Dr. Carole Wallis has over 10 years of experience in molecular diagnostic assays related to HIV, Hepatitis B and TB.  She has carried out several studies looking at the development of drug resistance patterns in Sub-Saharan Africa, Eastern and Western Africa covering all major subtypes in those regions (HIV-1 subtype C, D, A and AG); the impact these mutations will have on newer antiretroviral compounds and the use of different diagnostic assays to detect these mutations.  Dr. Wallis is Head of the Specialty Molecular Division for Lancet/BARC-SA.

Irina Yacobson, MD
Policy Team
Personal Website

Dr. Irina Yacobson has over 29 years of clinical experience, including 10 years in non-communicable diseases and 19 years in reproductive health field, including HIV. She has planned and implemented clinical workshops for health care providers around the world and conducted training in family planning, adolescent reproductive health, sexually transmitted infections, family planning/HIV integration, study-specific procedures, and evidence-based medicine. Dr. Yacobson is a Technical Advisor II in the Global Health, Population & Nutrition Department of FHI 360.