Dr. Leslie Boyer
Photo credit: Tucson.com

Leslie Boyer, Emeritus Professor/Medical Director, VIPER Institute, UA

Wednesday, June 30,

2:30 – 3:30 pm,

a Zoom Webinar*

The Sonoran Desert is a haven for interesting wildlife, including venomous creatures such as scorpions, rattlesnakes, Gila monsters, and black widow and Arizona brown spiders.  Fascinating though these animals can be from a distance, bites from them can be serious and treatments rely on the availability of effective antivenoms.  But with relatively low numbers of potential victims, there is little financial incentive for pharmaceutical companies to develop and maintain stocks of antivenoms.

Today we will learn more about these animals and their venoms, as well as the development of new antivenoms by the Venom Immunochemistry Pharmacology and Emergency Response (VIPER) Institute. 

Our speaker, Leslie Boyer, is a toxinologist: someone who studies toxins, poisons and venoms from plants, animals, and microbes.   She was named one of 30 “Heroes” of rare diseases over the last three decades by the FDA Office of Orphan Products Development for her clinical work leading to marketing of the first scorpion antivenom.  Recently retired, Dr. Boyer is currently an Emeritus Professor of Pathology, and founding Director of the VIPER Institute at UA . She has collaborated extensively on venom research with international colleagues in Mexico, Brazil, Europe, the Middle East and Sub-Saharan Africa, and has been a central clinical investigator for antivenom studies for the treatment of rattlesnake and coral snake bites.  Previously she was the Medical Director of the Arizona Poison and Drug Information Center.  She obtained her BS in Chemistry from the University of Arizona, an MD from Harvard Medical School, and completed residencies in Pediatrics at the Boston’s Children’s Hospital and the University of Arizona. 

Written by Denice Smith, Academy Village Volunteer

*For access to the Zoom Webinar please write info@arizonasenioracademy.org



June 30: “Venomous Creatures and Antivenoms”