NAU chemistry professor discusses her work on vaccines for HPV, HIV, opioid addiction (VIDEO)

Naomi Lee works in her lab

Is it possible to have a vaccine to prevent HIV or treat opioid addiction? Naomi Lee, an assistant professor of chemistry and biochemistry at NAU, believes it is, and her research is focused on that goal.

At a time when talk of vaccines is focused on the speed of the development and distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine, Lee’s work is different; her team is building a foundation of these long-standing conditions that have plagued people for decades. She has focused particularly on diseases that disproportionately affect Native Americans.

“The vaccines we’re developing are in the very early stages among a small research group vs. the COVID-19 vaccines being developed at large pharmaceutical companies with many researchers across the world,” Lee said. “In addition, the COVID-19 vaccines were developed quickly due to the advancements made over the years towards other coronaviruses and mRNA vaccine technology.”

Learn more about her work in this March 2020 video from NAU-TV.