Dr. Ravel received his Ph.D. degree from the University of Maryland College Park in Environmental Molecular Microbiology and Ecology and performed his postdoctoral training as a Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research fellow in the Chemistry Department at The Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, MD working on the chemistry and bioinformatics natural products. He joined the Institute for Genome Sciences at the University of Maryland School of Medicine in 2007 as an Associate Professor. Previously, from 2002 to 2007 he was an Assistant Investigator at The Institute for Genomic Research (TIGR) in Rockville, MD, the pioneering institute where the first microbial genome was sequenced.
Dr. Jacques Ravel is a Professor in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology and the Acting Director at the Institute for Genome Sciences, University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore, MD. Over the past 18 years he has developed a research program focused on applying modern genomics technologies and ecological principles to characterize the role and dynamics of the vaginal microbiome in women's health. He uses clinical genomics and systems biology approaches to develop improved strategy to manage gynecological and obstetrics conditions. He has published over 300 peer-reviewed publications. He is the co-Director (PI) of the NIH funded Collaborative Research Center on Human 3D Biomimetics Cervicovaginal Models for Sexually Transmitted Infections which
aims to develop an innovative biomimetic model of the lower reproductive tract to study aspects of the sexually transmitted infections (STIs), chlamydia and gonorrhea, that are not achievable in humans or with current animal or cell models. The program specifically uses systems biology approaches to examine the triangular relationship between human genetic variation, sexually transmitted infections and infections caused by Chlamydia trachomatis and Neisseria gonorrhoeae, and the function of the vaginal microbiome. Further, his laboratory studies the role of the vaginal microbiota in bacterial vaginosis, pregnancy and prematurity, as well as the health of neonates. His foundational research is currently being translated by developing novel live microbiome-based live biotherapeutic formulations targeted to restore vaginal health, treat conditions such as bacterial vaginosis and urinary tract infections. His work earned him to be elected to Fellowship of the American Academy of Microbiology (AAM) in 2012, and in 2015, he was awarded the Blaise Pascal International Research Chair and spend two years at the Institut Pasteur in Paris. He is the founder and Editor in Chief of the journal Microbiome (www.microbiomejournal.com), which has achieved an impact factor of 19.9 in the 10 years since its creation, and as a fellow of the AAM, he is an Associate Editor for the journal mBio.