Sean P. J. Whelan


I am gay and I am a professor and department chair.//


My graduate studies on poliovirus were conducted with Jeff Almond at the University of Reading in the UK, I then moved to the University of Alabama at Birmingham for post-doctoral training with Gail Wertz where I developed genetic tools to study vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV) – a livestock pathogen. I started my own academic lab at Harvard Medical School in 2002, where my group made many contributions to the understanding the structure and function of the replication machinery of VSV and the related virus rabies, and identified the cellular receptors for Ebola and Lassa virus. I moved to Washington University in Saint Louis as Chair of the Department of Molecular Microbiology, where we have also developed a vaccine candidate for SARS-CoV-2.