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Complementary and Alternative Medicine:
From Promises to Proof

Stephen Straus, M.D.
Director
National Center for Complementary
and Alternative Medicine


Tuesday, October 28, 2003 • 7 pm
Masur Auditorium • NIH Clinical Center

Photo of Dr.Straus

Dr. Stephen Straus, who was appointed the first director of NIH's National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine in October 1999, is an internationally recognized expert in clinical research and clinical trials. Concurrently with his NCCAM directorship, he is senior investigator, and former chief, of the Laboratory of Clinical Investigation at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

Dr. Straus has extensive research experience relating to many viral and immunologic conditions—including chronic fatigue syndrome, Lyme disease, HIV/AIDS, chronic hepatitis B virus, genital herpes infections, and chronic post-herpetic pain. For example, he demonstrated that acyclovir suppresses recurrent genital and oral herpes, and he characterized a previously unrecognized genetically determined disease—autoimmune lymphoproliferative syndrome.

Dr. Straus obtained his Bachelor of Science degree in life sciences from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1968 and his medical degree from Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons in 1972. Between an internship and a residency in medicine at Barnes Hospital, St. Louis, Missouri, he was a research associate at NIAID in 1973-1975. He returned to this NIH institute in 1979 as a senior investigator and has been at NIH ever since. He is board certified in both internal medicine and infectious diseases.

Dr. Straus is a recipient of five medals and other commendations from the U.S. Public Health Service—including the Distinguished Service Medal for innovative clinical research and the Health and Human Services Secretary's Distinguished Service Award for drafting the blueprint to reinvigorate clinical research at NIH. He also was given the Dutch National ME (myalgic encephalomyelitis) Fund Award in 1999.

An elected member of the American Society for Clinical Investigation and the Association of American Physicians, Dr. Straus also currently serves as associate editor of two journals—Field's Virology and Virology. He has been active on many professional committees and boards, lectured internationally, published more than 375 research articles, and edited several books.

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