People: Fulbright to fight disease in India


Ramaswamy Kalyanasundaram was awarded a Fulbright to fight a parasitic infection found in rural India.


Ramaswamy Kalyanasundaram, head of the department of biomedical sciences, professor of microbiology and immunology, and assistant dean for research at the College of Medicine at Rockford, was awarded a Fulbright Scholar grant to further his research on lymphatic filariasis, a parasitic infection carried by mosquitoes.

The disease, which threatens 1.4 million people in undeveloped nations worldwide, causes abnormal enlargement of lower limbs and body parts, often resulting in amputation.

Kalyanasundaram wants to eradicate the disease, starting in his homeland of India, using a vaccine he’s been developing for more than a decade that is now ready for human clinical trial.

He and a team of collaborators will travel through villages of rural India that are at high risk for the infection. They will conduct an extensive survey to determine how many inhabitants have the disease and how many appear to be immune.

The team will work with representatives from the World Health Organization to collect and test the mosquitoes.


Several undergraduate advisers have been honored for their work.

Alexandra Ford, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Nilkamal Shah, College of Business Administration, and Diana Soriano-Yanez, Latin American Recruitment and Educational Services (LARES) received the 2014 Provost’s Excellence in Undergraduate Advising Award.

Those honored by the National Academic Advising Association were Theresa Hayden, College of Business Administration, Outstanding Advising Administrator Award, and Jennifer Juarez, LARES, New Advisor Award.

LARES received an Outstanding Advising Program Award from the association.


Eight graduate students received the UIC Excellence in Undergraduate Mentoring Award for Graduate Students from the Office of the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Affairs, the Honors College, and the Graduate College.

Those honored for their work in mentoring undergraduate students include: Persis Driver, educational psychology; Bernard Issa, Spanish; Vinoadharen Nair Das, psychology; Sandra Troxell-Smith, biology; and Aimee Wodda, criminology, law and justice.

Honorable mentions went to Dionisio Amodeo, psychology, Emily Ruehs, sociology, and Arin Weidner, kinesiology.

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