Dr Vasee Moorthy (BA MA BMBCh MRCP PhD) leads the Research, Ethics and Knowledge Uptake Unit at WHO’s Department of Information, Evidence and Research in Geneva. The unit oversees WHO’s work in health research norms, standards and priority setting including the Global Observatory on Health R&D, in global health ethics and in translation of research to policy through development of WHO evidence-based guidelines. Dr Moorthy coordinates WHO clinical trials policy, assisting in development of the 2017 WHO Joint Statement on Public Disclosure of Results from clinical trials, signed by many leading funding agencies and NGOs globally. Prior to Jan 2017, he led the Vaccine Development Team at WHO Initiative for Vaccine Research The portfolio of activities for the WHO Vaccine Development Team includes HIV, tuberculosis, malaria vaccines, RSV, Group A & B streptococcal disease, ETEC, Shigella and Norovirus, and WHO’s work in preclinical, and Phase 1-2 clinical vaccine evaluation for emerging pathogens including filoviruses and MERS-CoV. He leads development of WHO TPPs in emerging infection and WHO’s work in research data sharing. During the 2014-2016 Ebola emergency he led WHO’s work coordinating the acceleration of Ebola vaccine R&D into Phase 1 and Phase 2 vaccine trials in USA, Canada, Europe and Africa. He continues to act as one of the Team Leaders in the R&D Blueprint, which builds on the R&D acceleration work initiated by WHO during the Ebola crisis.
He is an infectious disease subspecialist physician with a clinical medicine degree (BMBCh) from the University of Oxford, a BA in Natural Sciences (University of Cambridge 1st class honours) and experience working as a general medical officer for the South African government in the 1990s in a rural district general hospital. He gained a PhD for clinical immunology studies conducted from 1999 to 2002 as part of malaria vaccine trials with DNA, and recombinant poxvirus vaccines in The Gambia. He has previously worked as a Senior Program Officer at PATH based in Bethesda, MD, with responsibility for clinical trials in USA, Europe, Africa and India. Dr Moorthy has been an employee of the World Health Organization since 2009, where he initially acted as WHO’s malaria vaccine focal point.