Dr. Alexander Lai, Associate Professor (Biology), represents Kentucky State University. He has a B.S. in microbiology from University of Queensland (Australia), and a Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences from Mt. Sinai School of Medicine (New York). His research interests include viral evolution, emerging infectious diseases, and vaccine development. He has over 31 peer-reviewed publications, more than 6 book chapters, and a patent on DNA vaccine. In addition to academia, he had cofounded a biotech startup, and worked as chief virologist in a government public health laboratory in Hong Kong soon after the first SARS epidemic. He was involved in surveillance of novel viruses, and in drafting pandemic contingency plans. He has mentored many students and is seeking collaborative research with EPSCoR labs and researchers.