Joseph C. Glorioso III, PhD

Dr. Joseph Glorioso is a Professor in the Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics at the University of Pittsburgh.   He also holds secondary appointments in the Department of Human Genetics, University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health, and in the Department of Neurology, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine.

Dr. Glorioso received his PhD in Microbiology from Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, Louisiana.  Following a post-doctoral fellowship in the Department of Microbiology at Louisiana State University Medical Center, New Orleans, Louisiana, Dr. Glorioso held various positions at the University of Michigan Medical School.  It was in 1989 that Dr. Glorioso came to the University of Pittsburgh in the position of Professor and Chairman, Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics where he was chair until 2009.

Dr. Glorioso has established over a 35-year history of research related to the basic biology and genetics of herpes simplex virus (HSV). His contributions to the field include defining antiviral immune responses to infection, the genetics of viral pathogenesis and latency, and mechanisms of viral infection.  Furthermore, he has been a pioneer in the design and application of HSV gene vectors for the treatment of nervous system diseases such as peripheral neuropathies, chronic pain, and brain tumors. He continues to be a worldwide leader in the HSV gene vector field through the creation of innovative gene vectors and the development of manufacturing methods for Phase I and Phase II human clinical trials for pain gene therapy. His enkephalin vector showed considerable promise in a Phase I human trial to treat cancer pain and phase II testing is underway. These trials were sponsored by Diamyd Medical AB in Stockholm.

Dr. Glorioso’s most recent research has focused on the design and application of HSV gene vectors for exploring the molecular events that occur in sensory afferents that are involved in the transition from acute to chronic pain; development of retargeted oncolytic HSV vectors for specific infection and replication in human glioblastomas and applications to treatment of xenograft models of human brain human brain tumors; creation of novel HSV vectors that cross the blood brain barrier by transcytosis followed targeted infection and gene expression in spiny neurons of the striatum; these vectors are being applied to treatment of animal models of Huntington’s disease; and use of HSV gene vectors for the creation of induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells and the identification of transcriptional regulatory and signaling processes that participate in cellular reprogramming.

In addition to being a Founding Member of the American Society of Gene Therapy and the International Society for NeuroVirology, Dr. Glorioso is a member of these and more professional organizations:  the American Society for Microbiology, the American Society for Virology, Society of Neurooncology, the International Pain Society and American Society of Cancer Research.  Dr. Glorioso has received numerous awards and honors; a most recent award he received was the Paradigm Builder Award from the International Society of NeuroVirology in 2010 and the Pioneer Award for Gene Therapy.

View a partial list of Dr. Glorioso’s publications here.