Dr. David Ho
April 16, 1997, Greencastle, Ind. - "These results are great, but the game is not over," Dr. David Ho, named TIME magazine's 1996 Man of the Year for his groundbreaking research on the AIDS virus, told an audience at DePauw University today. Ho spoke on "The AIDS Epidemic and Prospects for Control" as part of the Timothy and Sharon Ubben Lecture Series at 10 a.m in Meharry Hall of historic East College , Meharry Hall. A question-and-answer session followed at 2:30 p.m. in the Center for Contemporary Media, Watson Forum.
"There's certainly a turning of the tide in one sense in terms of scientific accomplishment, but in terms of impacting the epidemic, this isn't going to do it," Dr. Ho warned. "So it's not time to celebrate. It's, in fact, a time to redouble our research efforts."
"Ho is not, to be sure, a household name," TIME wrote, "but some people make deadlines while others make history. And when the history of this era is written, it is likely that the men and women who turned the tide on AIDS will be seen as the true heroes of the age. For helping lift a death sentence ... David Da-i Ho, M.D. is TIME's Man of the Year for 1996."
Dr. Ho is science director and chief executive officer of the Aaron Diamond AIDS Research Center in New York City. He is a professor and physician at The Rockefeller University.
A virologist, Ho believed that AIDS was an infectious disease. He was the first to show that HIV was capable of growing in immune cells, called macrophages, and was successful in isolating the virus in the nervous system and semen. In addition, his research proved that saliva does not contain enough of the active virus to spread the infection.
Unlike the majority of researchers in his field, Ho focused on treatment of the virus in the early stages of the illness. His research indicated that administering drug therapies within the first several months of infection, the virus may be virtually eliminated. Although his treatment will not work on patients in the most advanced stages of AIDS, it has proved that AIDS is not invincible.
Ho received his Bachelor of Science degree at the California Institute of Technology. He completed his medical degree at Harvard Medical School.
Another video clip can be accessed at YouTube.
Two days before David Ho's visit, Jim Connor, senior producer at CNN, came to DePauw to show his 45-minute documentary on Ho produced by CNN and TIME. Connor discussed the documentary process and was joined by telephone during the two-hour session by John Stacks, executive editor of TIME magazine, to discuss the process by which TIME chooses its Man of the Year.