Marie-Paule Kieny

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Marie-Paule Kieny is a French virologist, vaccinologist, public health expert and science writer. She is currently director of research at INSERM and chief of the board at DNDi.


Kieny completed her PhD in microbiology in 1980 at the University of Montpellier, and received her Habilitation à Diriger des Recherches in 1995 from the University of Strasbourg.[1]

Kieny was presented with an honorary doctorate from the Autonomous University of Barcelona in 2019 for her commitment to public health and worldwide universal health care.[2][3][4][5]


After completing her PhD, Kieny took up a position at Transgene SA as assistant scientific director until 1988.[1]

Kieny became director of research at Inserm for the first time between 1999 and 2000.[1] Kieny was a member of the European Vaccine Initiative until 2010.[6]

Kieny was vaccine research director of WHO from 2002-2010, most notably during the 2009 swine flu pandemic.[7][8] She was promoted to assistant director-general, playing a major leadership role during the Ebola virus epidemic in West Africa and the 2015–16 Zika virus epidemic.[1][9][10][11][12] Kieny even audaciously signed up herself as a test subject for the safety of new Ebola vaccines being developed, amidst concerns over the logistics and ethics of testing early-stage therapeutics and preventatives for ebola in the context of an ongoing epidemic.[13][14] Given the slow development of new therapies in response to the outbreak, Kieny and colleagues began making a framework to speed up development and encourage researchers to share data openly without worrying about being scooped.[15] She commented on the successful development of efficacious vaccines for deployment in a future outbreak.[16] In aftermath of the 2014 Democratic Republic of the Congo Ebola virus outbreak Kieny stated that the vaccine may not be required since the outbreak was not as serious as previously feared.[17] Kieny was involved also in addressing the ongoing antimicrobial resistance crisis with WHO, overseeing the first WHO Model List of Essential Medicines to include guidance on proper use of antibiotics within the framework of universal health care.[11][18] She helped prepare a list of Antibiotic resistant bacteria which should be prioritised for research beyond just Extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis, such as Acinetobacter baumannii and Pseudomonas aeruginosa strains resistant to Carbapenem.[19][20][21][22]

Kieny was one of seven vaccine experts interviewed in 2012 by Wired about what the next decade held for vaccine innovation.[23]

In 2017 she joined the board of directors for the Human Vaccines Project, was made interim director of the Medicines Patent Pool (MPP), and joined the Drugs for Neglected Diseases Initiative (DNDi) as chief of the board.[8][10][24][25][26] She also holds a position as an independent director of BioMérieux, and as an advisor for the GISAID.[25][27][28] As head of MPP Kieny oversaw the licensing of the Hepatitis C drug Mavyret for generic production.[29][30]



  1. ^ a b c d "Biography Marie-Paule Kieny - Antivirals Congress - Elsevier". Retrieved 2019-02-03.
  2. ^ "Marie-Paule Kieny rep el doctorat honoris causa de la UAB pel seu treball per l'accés universal a la salut" (in Spanish). Retrieved 2019-02-03.
  3. ^ Barcelona, UAB-Universitat Autònoma de. "Kieny awarded an honorary doctorate for her "undeniable commitment" to the underprivileged". UAB Barcelona. Retrieved 2019-02-03.
  4. ^ "La UAB investirá doctora 'honoris causa' Marie-Paule Kieny por universalizar el acceso a la sanidad". La Vanguardia. 2019-01-14. Retrieved 2019-02-03.
  5. ^ Press, Europa (2019-01-14). "La UAB investirá doctora 'honoris causa' Marie-Paule Kieny por universalizar el acceso a la sanidad". Retrieved 2019-02-03.
  6. ^ "Marie-Paule Kieny | European Vaccine Initiative". Retrieved 2019-02-03.
  7. ^ Butler, Declan (2009-05-13). "Marie-Paule Kieny". Nature. doi:10.1038/news.2009.478. ISSN 0028-0836.
  8. ^ a b Project, Human Vaccines. "Dr. Marie-Paule Kieny Appointed To The Human Vaccines Project Board Of Directors". Retrieved 2019-01-27.
  9. ^ Nebehay, Stephanie; Kell, Kate. "WHO expects around 200,000 Ebola vaccine doses by mid-2015". The Irish Times. Retrieved 2019-01-27.
  10. ^ a b Media, Newton. "LSIPR 50 2018: At the head of an experiment in innovation". Life Sciences IP Review. Retrieved 2019-02-03.
  11. ^ a b Andalo, Debbie. "WHO lists bacteria that need to be targeted for antibiotic development". Pharmaceutical Journal. Retrieved 2019-02-03.
  12. ^ "WHO | WHO research and development on Zika". WHO. Retrieved 2019-03-03.
  13. ^ KupferschmidtAug. 12, Kai; 2014; Am, 10:00 (2014-08-12). "Using experimental drugs and vaccines against Ebola is ethical, WHO panel says". Science | AAAS. Retrieved 2019-03-03.
  14. ^ Sboros, Marika (2014-10-25). "WHO vaccines boss Marie-Paule Kieny signs up as first Ebola trial guinea pig". Retrieved 2019-02-03.
  15. ^ Check Hayden, Erika (2015-05-28). "Ebola teaches tough lessons about rapid research". Nature News. 521 (7553): 405. doi:10.1038/521405a.
  16. ^ "Final trial results confirm Ebola vaccine provides high protection against disease". Retrieved 2019-03-03.
  17. ^ "Ebola outbreak may be smaller than feared, WHO indicates". STAT. 2017-05-25. Retrieved 2019-03-03.
  18. ^ June 7; 2017. "Access, watch, reserve: WHO committee advises when to use common antibiotics". Retrieved 2019-02-03.
  19. ^ "Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria: We Need More Than New Drugs". Healthline. 2017-03-14. Retrieved 2019-03-03.
  20. ^ Belluz, Julia (2017-02-27). "The 12 most dangerous superbugs, ranked by the WHO". Vox. Retrieved 2019-03-03.
  21. ^ Kieny, Marie-Paule (2017-03-13). "WHO's priority list of antibiotic-resistant bacteria looks beyond tuberculosis". STAT. Retrieved 2019-03-03.
  22. ^ Jr, Donald G. McNeil (2017-02-27). "Deadly, Drug-Resistant 'Superbugs' Pose Huge Threat, W.H.O. Says". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2019-03-03.
  23. ^ Venkataramanan, Madhumita (2012-04-05). "The big question: What vaccines will we invent in the next decade?". Wired UK. ISSN 1357-0978. Retrieved 2019-01-27.
  24. ^ "Leadership And Change: An Interview With Medicines Patent Pool Board Chair Marie-Paule Kieny". Intellectual Property Watch. 2018-02-08. Retrieved 2019-01-27.
  25. ^ a b "Marie-Paule Kieny – DNDi". DNDi – Best science for the most neglected. 2017-08-15. Retrieved 2019-02-03.
  26. ^ "MPP-The Medicines Patent Pool Governance Board Appoints Marie-Paule Kieny as new Chair". Retrieved 2019-02-03.
  27. ^ "BioMerieux". Retrieved 2019-02-03.
  28. ^ GISAID. "Groundbreaking Global Initiative on Sharing All Influenza Data (GISAID) Celebrates Tenth Anniversary". Retrieved 2019-03-03.
  29. ^ December 3; 2018. "Medicines Patent Pool signs license for generic production of Mavyret". Retrieved 2019-03-03.
  30. ^ "AbbVie's Mavyret shows high cure rates". Retrieved 2019-03-03.
  31. ^ "Marie-Paule Kieny, décorée Chevalier de la Légion d'Honneur". Mission de la France (in French). Retrieved 2019-02-03.
  32. ^ "Marie-Paule Kieny, 2017 International Prize". Inserm - From science to health. Retrieved 2019-02-03.