Vincent Racaniello, Higgins Professor of Microbiology and Immunology at the Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons of Columbia University, has done laboratory research on viruses for over 41 years. He received an A.B. degree in Biology from Cornell University in 1974, and a Ph.D. from Mt. Sinai School of Medicine in New York, for thesis research with Peter Palese. After postdoctoral work with Dr. David Baltimore at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, in 1982 he joined the Columbia University faculty. He is the recipient of a Searle Scholars Award, Eli Lilly, and the Richard Ernst Award. He has served as an editor for the Journal of Virology, the Journal of Clinical Investigation, and PLoS Pathogens. He was a member of the WHO Steering Committee on Hepatitis/Polio, Chair of the NIH Virology Study Section, and Co-Chair of the Gordon Conference on Viruses and Cells. In 2015 he was President of the American Society for Virology. The research in Dr. Racaniello's laboratory has focussed on the biology of RNA viruses. His work produced the first infectious clone of an RNA virus, the discovery of the cell receptor for poliovirus, and the establishment of a transgenic mouse model for poliomyelitis. Following his belief that scientists must communicate their work to the public, he has co-authored a virology textbook, distributed videocasts of his virology lectures online, written a blog about viruses, and produced podcasts on viruses, parasites, bacteria, evolution, immunology, and neuroscience.