Groundbreaking Researcher Gives Back

Dr. William Prusoff’s work at Yale University dated back to the Eisenhower administration. During his distinguished career, he synthesized the first antiviral compound approved by the FDA for use in humans and developed a breakthrough drug that slowed the advance of HIV. The drug was marketed in the 1990s to combat the epidemic.

Prusoff, who died in 2011, was grateful to Yale for a rewarding and fulfilling career. As a professor emeritus of pharmacology and a senior research scientist, he showed his appreciation by creating the William H. Prusoff Fund for the Prevention of Global Infectious Diseases. The endowment will be used to support faculty research in global infectious diseases, student summer internships, and doctoral student research. The fund will be used at the discretion of the dean.

“I want to support the students who go to foreign countries and do the research. I agree with the direction that [the School] is taking,” Prusoff said. “I’m trying to return things to Yale.” Prusoff also has a personal connection to the School. His late wife, Brigitte Prusoff ’67 MPH, ’78 PH.D., attended the School and pursued her own distinguished career. “They treated her very, very well,” he said.