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MMI Faculty

Julian Tang, MD, PhD

J. Tang
Department of Medical Microbiology & Immunology
University of Alberta
Department of Medical Microbiology and Immunology
Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry
2B1.03 WMC
Edmonton, AB

Ph : (780) 407-3068
Email :


Associate Professor, Department of Medical Microbiology & Immunology


Dr. Tang graduated from Christ’s College, University of Cambridge, UK in Medical and Natural Sciences (1989), then acquired his PhD in Zoology, involving applied fluid dynamics at the University of Aberdeen, UK (1993). He further went on achieve his medical degree at the University of Sheffield, UK (1996). He later became a Fellow of the Royal College of Pathologists in the UK as a clinical virologist at the University College London Hospital while he also worked as an academic research fellow. Dr. Tang then moved to Hong Kong for a Clinical Assistant Professor position at the Chinese University of Hong Kong in the Department of Microbiology (2005). Here, he mainly focused on clinical virology with special interests in phylogenetic/bioinformatics techniques and hospital acquired infection control measures. In 2008, he then moved to Singapore as a consultant and clinical virologist at the National University Hospital. In 2012, Dr. Tang was recruited by the University of Alberta.


As a specialist medical virologist (FRCPath, UK and FHKCPath, Hong Kong in virology), my research interests include all aspects of clinical virology, i.e. where viruses infect and affect humans. This includes the epidemiology, diagnosis, pathogenesis (including the role of viral loads on the clinical severity of illness, Fig. 1) and treatment of viral infections, including preventative aspects, such as vaccination and infection control. Specific viruses of interest have included: rubella, adenovirus, herpesviruses, hepatitis viruses, enteroviruses, HIV, SARS-CoV and vectorborne viruses (dengue, chikungunya). These publications have included individual case reports, patient case series, as well as the laboratory surveillance and pathogenesis of various aspects of individual viruses (particularly influenza). In addition, I have a special interest in applying phylogenetic/bioinformatic techniques to viral sequences to further investigate their molecular epidemiology and have published in this area successfully for SARS-CoV (including describing specific gene deletions, Fig. 2) , hepatitis C, chikungunya virus, rotavirus and influenza, as well as coauthoring an extensive review of this topic.


1. Tang JW, Eames I, Li Y, Taha YA, Wilson P, Bellingan G, Ward KN, Breuer J. Door-opening motion leads to a transient breakdown in negative-pressure isolation conditions: the importance of vorticity and buoyancy airflows. J Hosp Infect. 2005; 61: 283-6.
2. Tang JW, Liebner TJ, Craven BA, Settles GS. A schlieren optical study of the human cough with and without wearing masks for aerosol infection control.J R Soc Interface. 2009 Dec 6;6 Suppl 6:S727-36.
3. Tang JW, Tambyah PA, Lai FYL, Lee HK, Lee CK, Loh TP, Chiu L, Koay ESC. Differing symptom patterns in early pandemic versus seasonal influenza infections. Arch Intern Med. 2010 May 24;170(10):861-7.
4. Tang JW, Lai FY, Nymadawa P, Deng YM, Ratnamohan M, Petric M, Loh TP, Tee NW, Dwyer DE, Barr IG, Wong FY. Comparison of the incidence of influenza in relation to climate factors during 2000-2007 in five countries. J Med Virol. 2010 Nov;82(11):1958-65.
5. Tang JW, Shetty N, Lam TTY, Hon KLE. Emerging, novel andknown influenza virus infections of humans. Infect Dis Clin North Am. 2010 Sep;24(3):603-17.