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Jose G. Esparza Bracho

Jose G. Esparza Bracho M.D., Ph.D.

Academic Title: Adjunct Professor
Primary Appointment: Medicine
Location: UMMC N3E10

Personal History:

Dr. Esparza is an internationally recognized expert on global health, vaccinology and HIV/AIDS.

From 2004 to 2014 he was with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in Seattle WA, first as Senior Advisor on HIV Vaccines and subsequently as Senior Advisor on Global Health (Vaccines.)

Now retired from the Gates Foundation, and living in Reston VA, Dr. Esparza provides expert advice to different organizations.

From 2012 Dr. Esparza is also an adjunct Professor of Medicine at the Institute of Human Virology of the University of Maryland in Baltimore.

Dr. Esparza received his MD degree in his native country of Venezuela (1968) and a PhD in Virology and Cell Biology (1974) from Baylor College of Medicine in Houston.

From 1974 to 1986 he worked at the Venezuelan Institute of Scientific Research, one of the most important research institutions in Latin America, where he became Professor of Virology and Chair of the Center for Microbiology and Cell Biology. He published seminal work in the field of rotaviruses, combining basic science with epidemiology and clinical work.

From 1986 to 2004 Dr. Esparza worked with the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), in Geneva, Switzerland, where he became a global leader in the field of HIV vaccines

Dr. Esparza is author of over 180 publications, and has served in numerous advisory committees all over the world. He is a member of the Venezuelan Academy of Medicine and of the Royal Academy of Doctors of Spain.

In 2013 received the Distinguished Alumnus Award from Baylor College of Medicine, and the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Institute of Human Virology, University of Maryland School of Medicine.


Coordinating Committee of the Global HIV/AIDS Vaccine Enterprise (J Esparza is corresponding author). The Global HIV/AIDS Vaccine Enterprise: Scientific Strategic Plan. Public Library of Science (PLoS)-Medicine 2(2), e25 (2005).

Esparza J, Yamada T. The discovery value of “Big Science”. The Journal of Experimental Medicine 204(4): 701-4 (2007).

Esparza J, McCutchan FE, Lewis GK, and Gallo RC. An HIV Vaccine – When and how? In: From Cause to Cure: Commemorating 25 years of HIV/AIDS Research. Senders S (Ed)  The American Association for the Advancement of Science . pp 32-35 (distributed with the May 2009 issue of Science) (2009).

Levine M, Lagos R, Esparza J. Vaccines and Vaccination in Historical Perspective. In: New Generation Vaccines (Chapter 1). (4th edition) Editor in Chief  MM Levine. Informa Healthcare, New York. pp 1-11, (2010).

Marzetta CA, Lee SS, Wrobel SJ, Singh KJ, Russell N, and Esparza J. The Potential Global Market Size and Public Health Value of an HIV-1 Vaccine in a Complex Global Market. Vaccine 28(30):4786-97 (2010).

Pitisuttithum P, Rerks-Garnm S, Chiu J, Kim J, Beneson M, Kent SJ, Tamashiro H, Manrique A, Bernstein A, Gotal R, Ditangco RA, Cooper DA, Osmanov S, Mathieson B, Sandstrom E, Esparza J, Hoff R, and Shao Y for the AIDS Vaccine for Asia Network.  Accelerating the development of an AIDS vaccine: The AIDS Vaccine for Asia Network (AVAN). Southeast Asian Journal of Tropical Medicine and Public Health 42(5):1130-1146 (2011).

Esparza J. Book Review: History of Vaccine Development by Stanley A. Plotkin (Editor). Human Vaccines and Immunotherapeutics  8:1-4 (2012).

Esparza J. Commentary: Understanding the efficacy variables of an HIV vaccine trial (RV144). Lancet Infectious Diseases 12:499-500 (2012).

Esparza J. Solid vaccine protection against SIV in rhesus monkeys provides proof-of-concept for further evaluation of a novel HIV vaccine approach in humans (Key paper evaluation).  Expert Reviews of Vaccines 11(5): 539-42 (2012).

Esparza J. The Battle Inside, Review of the book by Peter Piot “No time to loose: A life in pursuit of deadly viruses.”  Nature 486: 31-32 (2012).

Esparza J. A tale of two vaccines: lessons from polio that could inform the development of an HIV vaccine. AIDS 27: 1-5 (2013).  

Esparza J. Progress in the development of an adenovirus 26 vector platform for HIV vaccines (Key paper evaluation). Expert Reviews of Vaccines 12: 477-80 (2013).

Esparza J. A brief history of the global effort to develop a preventive HIV vaccine. Vaccine 31: 3502-3518 (2013).  

Esparza J. Has horsepox become extinct? Veterinary Record 173: 272-3 (2013).

Esparza J. What has 30 years of HIV vaccine research taught us? Vaccines 1: 513-526 (2013).