Facundo Batista Joins Ragon Leadership

The Ragon Institute is pleased to announce that Dr. Facundo D. Batista has joined the faculty.  Dr. Batista joins Ragon faculty members and collaborators in pursuit of the development of an effective HIV/AIDS vaccine.

Dr. Batista is an internationally renowned expert in the fields of B cell activation, high-resolution imaging and in vivo microscopy. His research focuses on the cellular and molecular events that lead to the activation of B cells and how these events affect the ability of B cells to produce antibodies. Dr. Batista will continue his B cell immunobiology research at the Ragon Institute.

In addition to his research, Dr. Batista will also serve as the Ragon Institute’s first Associate Director and the first recipient of the Phillip and Susan Ragon Professorship at Harvard Medical School and the Ragon Institute. In this role, he will serve as a bridge between research and administration, advising and directing senior leadership as the Institute moves forward.

After an international search conducted in conjunction with the Microbiology and Immunobiology Department at Harvard Medical School, Dr. Batista, formerly of the UK biomedical research center The Francis Crick Institute, was identified as the lead candidate.  This position was made possible because of the support of the Phillip T. and Susan M. Ragon Foundation.

Dr. Batista graduated from the University of Buenos Aires, Argentina and received his PhD at the International School of Advanced Studies, Trieste, Italy. As a postdoctoral European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO) fellow, he then trained in the Laboratory of Michael Neuberger at the Laboratory of Molecular Biology, Cambridge, UK. In 2002, Dr Batista established his own independent lab at the London Research Institute (now The Francis Crick Institute), London UK.

Dr. Batista’s career achievements also include numerous publications in Nature, Science, Immunity, EMBO Journal, Journal of Experimental Medicine and Nature Immunology and he has served on the editorial boards of various journals including Science.  He was elected to the EMBO Young Investigator Programme in 2009 and granted full EMBO membership in 2013.  He is also the recipient of the Royal Society Wolfson Research Merit Award.

Ragon Institute Director, Dr. Bruce Walker expressed excitement at this new addition to the Ragon research team, saying, “I believe Dr. Batista will be an enormous asset to our efforts to harness the immune system to prevent and cure human disease.”