BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — An infectious diseases expert from the University of Alabama at Birmingham has been named the replacement for Dr. Anthony Fauci.

On Wednesday, the National Institutes of Health named Dr. Jeanne M. Marrazzo as director of its National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. Marrazzo will replace Fauci, who led the department for 38 years before stepping down in December 2022. Marrazzo is expected to begin her role as NIAID director this fall

“Dr. Marrazzo brings a wealth of leadership experience from leading international clinical trials and translational research, managing a complex organizational budget that includes research funding and mentoring trainees in all stages of professional development,” acting NIH Director Dr. Lawrence A. Tabak said in a statement. “I look forward to welcoming Dr. Marrazzo to the NIH leadership team. I also want to extend my gratitude to Hugh Auchincloss, Jr., M.D., for serving as acting director of NIAID after long-time director Anthony S. Fauci, M.D., stepped down in December 2022.”

Marrazzo, who works as the director of UAB’s Division of Infectious Diseases, had previously worked with the NIH as a peer reviewer and advisory committee member. She has served as a principal investigator on NIH grants since 1997, as well as serving in chair positions on the American Board of Internal Medicine Council and the ABIM Infectious Disease Specialty Board. Additionally, Marrazzo is also a fellow of the American College of Physicians and of the Infectious Diseases Society of America.

CBS 42’s Jen Cardone speaks with Dr. Michael Saag, director of the Center for AIDS Reasearch at UAB, and infectious disease expert.

Marrazzo’s background at UAB has been in research on the human microbiome, specifically female reproductive tract infections and hormonal contraception, in addition to the prevention of HIV infection, sexually transmitted diseases and antibiotic resistance in gonorrhea. 

For her work, Marrazzo was awarded the American Sexually Transmitted Diseases Association’s Distinguished Career Award, the highest recognition of contributions to research and mentoring in the field.

Marrazzo earned a bachelor’s degree in biology from Harvard University, her doctor of medicine from Thomas Jefferson University and a master’s of Public Health in Epidemiology from the University of Washington.