Dr. Anne De Groot
Founder and Scientific Director
Internationally known for her research on the immune system’s response to vaccinations, Anne De Groot has explored the “genome-to-vaccine” approach to solving some of the world’s biggest infectious disease problems. Her biotech company EpiVax and her academic Institute for Immunology and Informatics are collaborating on epitope-driven vaccines to counter tuberculosis, HIV-AIDS, hepatitis C, dengue fever, cervical cancer, smallpox and tularemia. First as a professor at Brown University and now, at the University of Rhode Island, she has introduced the next generation of researchers to the field. In addition to founding EpiVax, Anne has dedicated her medical skills and research to expanding the availability of vaccines by founding the Global Alliance to Immunize against AIDS (GAIA) Vaccine Foundation , a non-profit that collaborates with clinics and laboratories in Mali, West Africa. As part of a group of medical volunteers, Anne founded the Clinica Esperanza (Hope Clinic), a community health center that offers free medical care and preventive health services in Rhode Island.
Dr. Karamoko Tounkara
Working hard to make sure all our patients receive the best care available, Dr. Karamoko Tounkara has been directing GAIA's programs since 2007. A distinguished pediatrician, he earned his M.D. in Odontology -Stomatology from the University of Bamako in 2001 and his pediatrics certification from the University of Bamako in 2008. His published papers on KAP/WTP studies for HIV trials in Bamako ("Knowledge, Attitudes, Practices. Willingness to Participate) have been presented at Keystone HIV Vaccine conference in 2009 and the 4th International Conference on HIV Treatment Adherence in Miami in 2009. He presented GAIA's research on Human Papillomavirus (HPV), cervical cancer, and HIV prevention at the International Symposium on HIV and Emerging Infectious Diseases in Marseille, France in 2016.
Specializing in collaborative environments, Eliza Squibb has worked as an artist in residence at the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, MA and the Edna Lawrence Nature Lab in Providence, RI. Her research on traditional art has taken her to Tunisia and the Peruvian Amazon where she taught sewing lessons in Yine-Yami and Shipibo indigenous communities. She is a graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design.
GAIA BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Jeffrey T. Safrit, Ph.D.
Elizabeth George, Esq.
Ned Heltzer, Pharm.D
Sarah Beseme, Ph.D.
Janet McNicholl, Ph.D.
GAIA SCIENTIFIC BOARD
Ben Aboubacar, M.D., Advisor, UNICEF
Marc Girard, Ph.D.,Vaccine Research Consultant
Anne Hosmalin M.D., Ph.D., Inst. Cochin de Genetique Molec.
Ousmane Koita, LMBA, FAST, University of Bamako
Sarah Rowland-Jones, M.D., Oxford University