Dr Subash Babu has become the first Indian scientist to win the prestigious 2022 Bailey K Ashford Medal for his exemplary research and contributions to tropical medicine.
Dr Subash Babu, a prominent Indian scientist and physician, was awarded the prestigious 2022 Bailey K Ashford Medal and 2022 Fellow of the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (FASTMH) Award for his exemplary research work and contributions to tropical medicine.
This award has reportedly never been given to an Indian scientist or institution in its 82-year history.
ANI stated that Dr Subash Babu is the first Indian to receive both the Bailey K Ashford medal and the FASTMH award.
Dr Babu is the scientific director of the ICER (International Centre for Excellence in Research)-India programme. He is a pioneer in research on helminth infections and tuberculosis. He received the FASTMH award for his dedicated work to tropical medicine, which he began in 1995.
He did his MBBS at the Government Kilpauk Medical College in Tamil Nadu and his PhD in immunology at the University of Connecticut in the USA. After his post-doctoral fellowship at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), he returned to India and established the ICER at the campus of ICMR-NIRT in Chennai in 2006.
According to ANI, his research portfolio centres on endemic infections in India and is funded by the NIH in Bethesda, USA. He has built a programme that involves extensive field studies, collaborations around the world, and clinical trials.
This research has led to major advances in the understanding of the immunology of different infectious diseases, including tuberculosis, filariasis, strongyloidiasis, and hookworm infections, that are endemic to India.
He has also been the principal or co-investigator of 31 research protocols and serves as the mentor for graduate and undergraduate students from 30 Indian academic institutions.
He has over 240 publications in international academic journals and book chapters, including Topley and Wilson’s Microbiology and Microbial Infections, as well as Elsevier’s Clinical Immunology books, which are used in medical schools and graduate programmes throughout the world.
“I am elated and thankful for the recognition. Especially on behalf of my wonderful team and colleagues,” Dr Subash Babu told The New Indian Express.
The Bailey K Ashford Medal is presented to one or more mid-career members for their distinguished work in tropical medicine by the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (ASTMH). The ASTMH is the largest scientific organisation in tropical medicine in the world.
Dr Daniel Bausch, president of the ASTMH said “Dr Subash Babu has made major contributions to the elucidation of the key immunological underpinnings of diseases including filariasis, influences of helminthic-infection on metabolic disorders, and the interface between diabetes and tuberculosis. Most importantly, his seminal work on the influence of Type-2 diabetes in TB in response to anti-TB therapy has wide-ranging impact in the TB field and for global health.”
Meanwhile, the Indian scientist was nominated by Dr Thomas Nutman, chief of the Laboratory of Parasitic Diseases (LPD) at the NIH.
“Subash has made major contributions to the immunology of human helminth infections and TB. Over the last 20-plus years, he has committed himself to apply his extraordinary talent in basic and translational research to important public health problems in India,” Dr Nutman said.