Dr Farrar succeeds Sir Mark Walport, who stepped down at the end of March to become the Government's Chief Scientific Adviser. Since then, Dr Ted Bianco, the Trust's Director of Technology Transfer, has been serving as Acting Director.
Dr Farrar is an outstanding clinical scientist who has built a reputation as one of the world's leading figures in the field of infectious disease. Before taking up his post, he was Professor of Tropical Medicine and Global Health at Oxford University, Global Scholar at Princeton University, and Director of the Wellcome Trust's Major Overseas Programme in Vietnam.
He was appointed OBE in 2005 for services to tropical medicine, and he has been awarded the Memorial Medal and the Ho Chi Minh City Medal from the Government of Vietnam, the Oon International Award for his work on H5N1 avian flu, the Frederick Murgatroyd Prize for Tropical Medicine by the Royal College Physicians, and the Bailey Ashford Award by the American Society for Tropical Medicine and Hygiene. He is a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences.