Nathan Wolfe

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Nathan D. Wolfe
Nathan Wolfe 2011 Shankbone.JPG
Wolfe at the 2011 Time 100 gala
Born (1970-08-24) August 24, 1970 (age 52)
CitizenshipUnited States
Alma materStanford, Harvard
Scientific career
InstitutionsStanford, UCLA

Nathan Daniel Wolfe, Ph.D. (born 24 August 1970) is an American virologist. He was the founder (in 2007) and director of Global Viral[1] and the Lorry I. Lokey Visiting Professor in Human Biology at Stanford University.


Dr. Wolfe spent over eight years conducting biomedical research in both sub-Saharan Africa and Southeast Asia. He is also the founder of Metabiota, which offers both governmental and corporate services for biological threat evaluation and management. He serves on the editorial board of EcoHealth and Scientific American and is a member of DARPA's Defense Science Research Council. His laboratory was among the first to discover and describe the Simian foamy virus.[2]

In 2008, he warned that the world was not ready for a pandemic.[3]

In 2011, his book The Viral Storm: The Dawn of a New Pandemic Age[4] was short-listed for the Winton Prize.[5]

As reported in a Wired feature in 2020, Wolfe worked with the German insurance firm Munich Re to offer major corporate leaders pandemic policies, which were not purchased; a stark reality during the ensuing COVID-19 pandemic.[6]


Wolfe has been awarded more than $40 million in funding from a diverse array of sources including the U.S. Department of Defense,, the National Institutes of Health, the Skoll Foundation, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the National Geographic Society.[7]


Wolfe's work has been published in and covered by the popular media including The New York Times, The Economist, Discover and Scientific American. He has appeared on CNN and is a regular TED presenter. He has also appeared as one of Time magazine's "Time 100" for 2011.

Personal life[edit]

Wolfe is married to the playwright Lauren Gunderson and has 2 sons. As part of his work, he has lived in Cameroon, Malaysia and Uganda.[5]


  1. ^ Langreth, Robert. Finding the Next Epidemic Before It Kills. Forbes. 2 November 2009.
  2. ^ a b Geographic, National (June 2020). "Grantee 2004-2005: Nathan D. Wolfe". National Geographic Emerging Explorers. Retrieved 9 July 2020.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  3. ^ Dwyer, Paul (December 24, 2020). "World-renowned virologist warned in 2008 about future epidemics". CNN. Retrieved January 3, 2021.
  4. ^ Nathan Wolfe (2011), The Viral Storm: The Dawn of a New Pandemic Age, Henry Holt & Co.
  5. ^ a b "Nathan Wolfe". DCP3. Archived from the original on 29 June 2020. Retrieved 29 June 2020.
  6. ^ Ratliff, Evan (July–August 2020). "We Can Protect the Economy From Pandemics. Why Didn't We?". Wired. Retrieved 9 July 2020.{{cite news}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  7. ^ "Nathan Daniel Wolfe". Stanford University. Retrieved 29 June 2020.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)

External links[edit]