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Thomas E. Wellems, M.D., Ph.D.
Twinbrook III, Room 3E-10A
12735 Twinbrook Parkway
Rockville, MD 20852-8132
Phone: 301-402-1274
Fax: 301-402-2201
twellems@niaid.nih.gov

Laboratory of Malaria and Vector Research

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Photo of Thomas E. Wellems

Thomas E. Wellems, M.D., Ph.D.

Chief, Laboratory of Malaria and Vector Research
Chief, Malaria Genetics Section, LMVR

Major Areas of Research

  • Antimalarial drug responses and factors that affect clinical outcome after treatment
  • Malaria protection conferred by human hemoglobinopathies and red cell polymorphisms
  • Antigenic variation by Plasmodium falciparum parasites
  • Molecular mechanisms of malaria parasite infectivity and pathogenesis
 

Program Description

Investigations in the Malaria Genetics Section focus on the determinants of drug resistance, immune evasion, and disease virulence in malaria. Areas of study include the following:

  • Antimalarial drug resistance and factors that affect clinical outcome after treatment
  • Malaria protection conferred by human hemoglobinopathies and other red cell polymorphisms
  • Antigenic variation by Plasmodium falciparum parasites
  • Molecular mechanisms of malaria parasite infectivity and pathogenesis

Research activities on the National Institutes of Health (NIH) campus are integrated with field studies in Africa and Southeast Asia. Inquiries about predoctoral and postdoctoral fellowships as well as Ph.D. studentships in the NIH Graduate Partnership Program are welcome.

Biography

Dr. Wellems received his M.D. and Ph.D. from the University of Chicago. He completed his internal medicine residency at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, and in 1984 he joined the Division of Intramural Research. He has directed the Malaria Genetics Section since 1991 and has served as chief of the Laboratory of Malaria and Vector Research since 2002. Dr. Wellems is a member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences and the Institute of Medicine, is a past president of the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, and serves on a number of advisory committees for foundations and public-private partnerships, including the Medicines for Malaria Venture.

For a biographical profile of Dr. Wellems, see Davis TH. Profile of Thomas E. Wellems. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2010 Aug 3;107(31):13567-9.

Research Group

Dr. Juliana Sá
Dr. Nahla Gadalla
Dr. Roberto Moraes Barros
Dr. Kristin Lane
Ms. Anna Liu

Selected Publications

Tokumasu F, Crivat G, Ackerman H, Hwang J, Wellems TE. Inward cholesterol gradient of the membrane system in P. falciparum-infected erythrocytes involves a dilution effect from parasite-produced lipids. Biol Open. 2014 May 29. Epub ahead of print.

Miller LH, Ackerman HC, Su XZ, Wellems TE. Malaria biology and disease pathogenesis: insights for new treatments. Nat Med. 2013 Feb;19(2):156-67.

Papakrivos J, Sá JM, Wellems TE. Functional characterization of the Plasmodium falciparum chloroquine resistance transporter (PfCRT) in transformed Dictyostelium discoideum vesicles. PLoS One. 2012;7(6):e39569.

Yuan J, Cheng KC, Johnson RL, Huang R, Pattaradilokrat S, Liu A, Guha R, Fidock DA, Inglese J, Wellems TE, Austin CP, Su XZ. Chemical genomic profiling for antimalarial therapies, response signatures, and molecular targets. Science. 2011 Aug 5;333(6043):724-9.

Sá JM, Twu O, Hayton K, Reyes S, Fay MP, Ringwald P, Wellems TE. Geographic patterns of Plasmodium falciparum drug resistance distinguished by differential responses to amodiaquine and chloroquine. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2009 Nov 10;106(45):18883-9.

Hayton K, Gaur D, Liu A, Takahashi J, Henschen B, Singh S, Lambert L, Furuya T, Bouttenot R, Doll M, Nawaz F, Mu J, Jiang L, Miller LH, Wellems TE. Erythrocyte binding protein PfRH5 polymorphisms determine species-specific pathways of Plasmodium falciparum invasion. Cell Host Microbe. 2008 Jul 17;4(1):40-51.

Visit PubMed for a complete publication listing.

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Patents

Sim KL, Chitnis C, Miller LH, Peterson DS, Su XZ, Wellems TE, inventors; The United States of America as represented by the Department of Health and Human Services, assignee. Binding domains from Plasmodium vivax and Plasmodium falciparum erythrocyte binding proteins. United States patent US 6,962,987. 8 Nov 2005.

Wellems TE, Howard RJ, inventors; The United States of America as represented by the Department of Health, assignee. Recombinant DNA clone containing a genomic fragment of PfHRP-II gene from Plasmodium falciparum. United States patent US 5,296,382. 22 Mar 1994.

Visit the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for a complete patent listing.

Last Updated June 20, 2014