Merle Sande

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Merle Sande
Born (1939-09-02)September 2, 1939
Died November 14, 2007(2007-11-14) (aged 68)
Seattle, WA
Nationality American
Fields medicine
Alma mater Washington State University
University of Washington
Known for infectious diseases

Merle Sande(September 2, 1939 – November 4, 2007) was a leading American infectious-diseases expert whose early recognition of the looming public health crisis posed by AIDS led to the development of basic protocols for how to handle infected patients. He graduated from Washington State University and received his MD degree from the University of Washington, School of Medicine in Seattle.

Sande was a professor of Internal Medicine from 1971–1980 at the University of Virginia, where he performed research in mice on bacterial meningitis therapies such as novel antibiotics and corticosteroids. Dr Sande was Chief of Medical Services at San Francisco General Hospital in 1981 when he recognized a pattern of gay men being admitted with the rare pneumocystis pneumonia. His efforts on behalf of these patients resulted in the formation of an AIDS ward at San Francisco General Hospital and later an AIDS outpatient clinic. Teaming with such experts as Julie Gerberding and Paul Volberding he helped to craft what became known as the San Francisco model of AIDS therapy, a comprehensive, rational approach to care that avoided the fear and paranoia surrounding the disease at that time. The model addressed a need for infection-control guidelines, clinical studies and research financing and became a template for AIDS centers nationwide. Sande helped found to the Gladstone Institute of Virology and Immunology, which performed trials on some of the first anti-retrovirals such as zidovudine. He also helped to found the Infectious Diseases Institute at the Makerere University College of Health Sciences in Kampala, Uganda a major center for HIV education and research in Africa. Sande was a professor of Medicine at University of California, San Francisco from 1980–1996, chairman of the department internal medicine at University of Utah from 1996–2005 and Professor of medicine at University of Washington from 2005 until his death and president of the Infectious Diseases Society of America from 1993–4. He was also the editor of two highly regarded medical references "The Medical Management of AIDS." and "The Sanford Guide to Antimicrobial Therapy". He also gave the always popular and well attended annual update in Infectious Diseases at the American College of Physicians annual meeting as well as the clinical case presentations at the Infectious Diseases Society of America annual meeting. Sande died from complications of Multiple Myeloma in 2007.

Selected bibliography[edit]


  • Acuña L, Guillermo (February 2008). "A giant in Infectious Diseases has died: Merle A. Sande, MACP, FIDSA". Revista chilena de infectología : órgano oficial de la Sociedad Chilena de Infectología (in Spanish). 25 (1): 13. doi:10.4067/s0716-10182008000100001. PMID 18273516. 

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