Dr. David D. Ho (BS '74)
Served 1997–2006; Reelected 2015
David Ho, MD, is the founding scientific director of the Aaron Diamond AIDS Research Center, a world-renowned biomedical research institute. He is also the Clyde and Helen Wu Professor of Medicine at Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons.
Ho received his degrees from the California Institute of Technology (1974) and Harvard Medical School (1978). Subsequently, he did his clinical training in internal medicine and infectious diseases at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center/UCLA School of Medicine, and Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical School, respectively.
Working at the forefront of AIDS research for 39 years, Ho has published over 400 papers. His elegant studies, beginning in 1994, unveiled the dynamic nature of HIV replication in vivo and revolutionized our basic understanding of this horrific disease. This knowledge led Ho to be the first to administer combination antiretroviral therapy that resulted in unprecedented control of HIV in patients, transforming an automatic death sentence into a manageable disease. AIDS mortality in richer nations has declined dramatically, and over 25 million in the developing world have benefited from this major development. Ho has been the principal driving force behind this medical breakthrough in what is arguably the worst plague in human history.
Ho's research team is now devoting considerable effort to developing neutralizing antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 to help address the pandemic.
The recipient of numerous honors and awards for his scientific accomplishments, Ho has received 14 honorary doctorates as well as the Distinguished Alumni Award from Caltech. He is also a member of the National Academy of Medicine. Ho was named Time magazine's Man of the Year in 1996 and was the recipient of a Presidential Citizens Medal in 2001.
Standing Committee: Technology Transfer and Innovation