Print this page
December 20, 2021

Orihuela named interim chair for the Department of Microbiology

Written by

Orihuela squareCarlos J. Orihuela, Ph.D., has been named interim chair of the Department of Microbiology, effective Feb. 1.

Orihuela obtained his Bachelor of Science Degree from Baylor University in 1996. He subsequently earned his Ph.D. in Microbiology and Immunology from the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston where he was a Kempner Scholar. From 2001 to 2005, Orihuela completed his postdoctoral research training in the Department of Infectious Diseases at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in Memphis and then returned to Texas in 2005 as an assistant professor in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio.

While at San Antonio, Orihuela was promoted with tenure to associate professor and was a recipient of the Presidential Junior Research Scholar Award, Distinguished Hispanic Faculty Award from the Graduate School, and the Glenn Award for Research in Biological Mechanisms of Aging. In 2015, Orihuela joined the UAB Department of Microbiology, serving as vice chair for Faculty Development since 2019. In 2020, he was selected as a Distinguished Lecturer by the American Society of Microbiology. In 2021, he became an elected fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology for his work on the molecular basis of pneumococcal pathogenesis.

“The opportunity to steer a department with the strengths of Microbiology is a tremendous honor and responsibility,” says Orihuela. “I will work diligently to ensure that our faculty have every opportunity to succeed.”

Fran Lund, Ph.D., will be stepping down as chair to lead the new Immunology Institute, a cutting-edge and interdisciplinary hub for faculty, researchers, clinicians, health policy experts, and educators who seek to advance the study of immunology and improve human health through immune-based therapies including vaccines.