Background on the University of Maryland

School of Medicine building

The University of Maryland is the oldest public medical school in the United States (and the 5th oldest medical school overall). It was the first medical school to build its own hospital with the primary intent of clinical instruction.

Infectious Diseases have played a very significant role in the history of the institution even before the institution or ID as a specialty existed. A brief history of ID milestones at UMD, adapted from Dr. Theodore Woodward's book (Make Room for Sentiment: A Physician’s Story):

  • 1793-1797 – Drs. Potter and Davidge report the lack of contagion of yellow fever.
  • 1844-46 – Elisha Bartlett published the first comprehensive discussion of typhus fever.
  • 1878 – Dr. Rohe published treatise on leprosy.
  • 1894 – Thomas Caspar Gilchrist described the first case of blastomycosis.
  • 1898 – Henry Carter suggests an “intrinsic incubation period” for yellow fever transmission. James Carroll, second-in-command to Walter Reed, documents the mosquito as the vector for yellow fever.
  • 1900 – John Ruhrah initiates the first collective investigation of actinomycosis.
  • 1906 – Samuel Taylor Darling writes the first description of disseminated histoplasmosis. Later, he distinguished himself in field studies of malaria, hookworm, and dysenteric diseases.
  • 1922 – Dr. Fulton led the campaign for the first registration law requiring reports of patients with TB. He planned and supervised the first TB exposition in Baltimore and was instrumental in founding the National TB Association.
  • 1929 – Maurice Pincoffs led the research team that reported the efficacy of chlormycetin in a patient with rocky mountain spotted fever. William Elgin becomes a pioneer in smallpox vaccine development.
  • 1930 – Dr. Pincoffs and Krause identify the index case of murine typhus fever leading to isolation of Rickettsia from rats and fleas.
  • 1941 – Theodore Woodward documents the efficacy of inactivated typhus vaccine.
  • 1948 – Dr. Woodward reports the first cure of scrub typhus with chlormycetin, and received a Nobel Prize nomination for this work. He also establishes one of the first ID divisions in the country. Dr. Robinson documents that gonorrhea and early syphilis can be treated with oral antibiotics. 
  • 1958 – Richard Hornick clarifies pathogenesis of typhoid fever and documents effective doses of typhoid vaccines.
  • 1961 – Sheldon Greisman clarifies the role of bacterial endotoxins in febrile illnesses caused by Gram-negative bacilli.
  • 1974 – Clinical Research Center for Vaccine (CRCVD) is formed. Myron Levine and James Kaper develop and test a genetically engineered single-dose live oral cholera vaccine.
  • 1976 – CRCVD becomes the CVD.
  • 1992 – Philip Mackowiak shows that standard body temperature averages 98.2 not 98.6 and varies during the day, by age, by gender, and by race.
  • 1996 – Robert Gallo (co-discoverer of HIV), Robert Redfield, and William Blattner form the Institute of Human Virology (IHV).
  • 2000 – Carol Tacket successfully tests a potato-based vaccine for Norwalk virus.
  • 2011 – Dr. Gallo co-found the Global Virus Network (GVN) whose mission is “to strengthen medical research and response to current viral causes of human disease and to prepare for new viral pandemic threats.”
  • 2014 – An unprecedented international consortium (including the University of Maryland School of Medicine and NIH) assembles to accelerate collaborative multi-site trials of candidate Ebola vaccines.
  • 2015 – The IHV begins Phase 1 clinical trials of an HIV vaccine candidate.
  • 2015 – The Institute for Global Health (IGH) is established.
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