Dr. Ilane Hernández Morales, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México
Young Scientist from Mexico Receives Award for Veterinary Health Achievement

» Award Overview
» Biography
» Past Winners and Recognition

Dr. Ilane Hernández Morales was honored September 30, 2009, with the Pedro N. Acha Award for Veterinary Public Health for her thesis "Preparation and Assessment of a DNA Vaccine Versus Salmonella enterica Serovar Enteritidis Outer Membrane Protein A (OmpA) in Laying Hens." The Pan American Health and Education Foundation along with the Pan American Health Organization gave the award to Dr. Hernandez for her excellent discoveries and work to improve public health.

Salmonella enteritidis is the microorganism most frequently isolated from clinical samples in humans. Dr. Hernández's important thesis discusses a DNA-based vaccine to combat Salmonella living within the chicken so that it is not passed through the egg and onto humans. In Mexico, up to 84 billion Salmonella-infected eggs are produced annually, which poses a great threat to consumers.

The Pedro N. Acha Award for Veterinary Public Health, created in 1993, recognizes the importance of veterinary public health to the peoples of the Americas and the economies of the countries. This award identifies outstanding research based on a thesis written by an undergraduate student in veterinary public health within the last three years. It also aims to encourage dedication to the highest standards of scholarship and professionalism.

Dr. Ilane Hernandez Morales of Mexico accepts the 2009 Pedro N. Acha Award for Excellence in Veterinary Public Health from PAHEF on Vimeo.

Dr. Hernandez's passion in veterinary public health began when she was a little girl living on a farm in Mexico. It was then, being in the company of animals daily, that she realized the significance of the animal-human relationship.

"It is an honor to receive the Pedro N. Acha Award for Veterinary Public Health that recognizes our research group and the National Autonomous University of Mexico's continued effort to generate high-quality research applicable to veterinary health" said Dr. Hernandez.

"Salmonella poses an enormous health risk to the population, not just in Mexico but around the world. We are grateful for Dr. Hernandez's research that is advancing both veterinary and public health. Her work has taken us a step closer to preventing Salmonella transition to humans," said Edward Kadunc, executive director of PAHEF.

Dr. Hernandez is currently a professor of bacteriology and mycology and immunology at the National Autonomous University of Mexico.

A Sample of Recent PAHEF Projects in the Region