Dr. José Luis Ramirez has been the Coordinator of the UNU Programme for Biotechnology in Latin America and the Caribbean (UNU-BIOLAC) since January 2000. In addition, since September 1997, he has been professor and researcher at the Biotechnology Center of UNU-BIOLAC’s host institution, Instituto de Estudios Avanzados — IDEA. Moreover, he was a professor of Genetics at the Central University of Venezuela where he headed both the Department of Graduate Studies in Cell Biology and the Molecular Genetics Groups. He has a Ph.D. in molecular biology from Johns Hopkins University. An expert on tropical diseases, Dr. Ramirez has published numerous papers on Leishmaniasis, Chaga’s disease and other parasitic infections and serves as a high level Advisor and permanent collaborator of the Central American Network of Tropical Diseases.