The Taylor Fellowship aids recruitment and retention of outstanding graduate students and can provide dissertation support. Graduate students conducting research in virology receive first preference. Undergraduate microbiology majors, who preferably are performing research in virology, may also apply for scholarships from this fund and receive second preference. The endowed fellowship was created in 2000 by alumnus Lawrence Blatt to honor his former teacher and mentor, Professor Milton W. Taylor.
About Milton Taylor
Milton W. Taylor (1931-2022) joined the IU faculty in 1967, teaching molecular biology and performing research. He worked in the areas of somatic cell genetics, viral replication, and the effects of interferon on viral replication and the immune system. While at IU, Taylor received uninterrupted funding from the NIH and grants from the American Cancer Society, the Damon Runyon Foundation, and industrial groups such as InterMune, Amgen, Schering Plough, and Eli Lilly. Near the end of his career, he ran one of four ancillary labs selected to participate in a clinical trial funded by NIH to investigate the effects of interferon on hepatitis C patients. Taylor was a fellow of the American Society for Microbiology (an honor reserved for particularly accomplished microbiologists), a fellow of the Indiana Molecular Biology Institute, and an office holder in the International Society for Interferon and Cytokine Research.
About Lawrence Blatt
Lawrence M. Blatt, Ph.D.—a pioneering virologist and biopharma entrepreneur—studied under Taylor as an undergraduate, earning his B.S. in microbiology in 1983. He began collaborating with Taylor on scientific projects in the early 1990s. Together they researched the synergistic effects of interferon on virus replication and the study of gene expression using microarray technology. Blatt has cofounded two biopharmaceutical companies and in 2018 became the CEO of the second one: Aligos Therapeutics, a San Francisco-based biotech discovering and developing curative treatments for hepatologic diseases and viral infections. In addition to the Milton Taylor Fellowship in Virology, Blatt's generosity has benefitted Indiana University and its students in a variety of ways, including the creation and support of our department's endowed Lawrence M. Blatt Chair of Virology.
2023 Taylor Fellow: Max Garcia
Max Garcia is a Ph.D. candidate in Professor Pranav Danthi's lab. He studies mammalian reovirus and how particle stability is controlled. Max’s research has also led to understanding how alterations in some capsid proteins have staggering effects on others. After teaching molecular biology for two semesters and a microbiology lab for three semesters, he looks forward to teaching in the future
2023 Taylor Fellow: Nora Gibes
Nora is a Ph.D. candidate in Professor Adam Zlotnick's lab. She is using cryo-EM to study the structural changes that Hepatitis B Virus undergoes during viral genome maturation. She plans to continue studying structural biochemistry after graduation. Nora also enjoys participating in the BiochemGRC.
2023 Taylor Fellow: Nicole Stark
Nicole is a fifth-year graduate student in Professor Rich Hardy’s lab. Her research focuses on Wolbachia-mediated pathogen blocking of RNA viruses.