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Holly Sellers, a professor at the Poultry Diagnostic and Research Center (PDRC), has been named UGA’s Inventor of the Year. The prestigious award was handed out at the 40th annual Research Awards banquet on April 4. Inventor of the Year has been awarded since 2000, recognizing an inventor for a unique and innovative discovery that has made an impact on the community. Faculty from the College of Veterinary Medicine have won this award three of the past four years.

Sellers’ research has led to 12 invention disclosures and five U.S. patents, with another application pending and a multitude of foreign patents and applications. Sellers’ technologies have been made available to industry partners through more than 20 license agreements, leading to four commercial poultry vaccines as well as numerous autogenous vaccines that together support and secure Georgia’s $28 billion poultry industry.

“Dr. Seller’s accomplishments have truly been remarkable. As head of virology diagnostics at the Poultry Diagnostic and Research Center, she works closely with the poultry industry to improve the health and wellbeing of poultry across the state and the country,” said Mark Jackwood, the J.R. Glisson professor of avian medicine and head of the department of population health and PDRC. “Her tireless efforts have led to rapid diagnostic tests and innovative vaccines saving the industry millions of dollars year after year. We are very proud of her outstanding achievements.”

She pursues clinical and molecular virology research with an emphasis on viruses that cause respiratory, enteric and musculoskeletal diseases in poultry, focusing on the identification, characterization and control of those viruses. In addition, she directs virology services at the PDRC and mentors graduate and professional students. Sellers received both her master’s and Ph.D. in medical microbiology from the College of Veterinary Medicine and a bachelor’s degree in biology from Stephen F. Austin University.