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OSDH announces director of Oklahoma Pandemic Center of Innovation and Excellence and Public Health Lab

Thursday, January 14, 2021

Dr. Michael Kayser will bring both clinical and laboratory research expertise to PHL and OPCIE

OKLAHOMA CITY — The Oklahoma State Department of Health, in partnership with Prairie One Solutions, announced the hiring of Dr. Michael Kayser to serve as director for the new Oklahoma Pandemic Center of Innovation and Excellence (OPCIE) and Public Health Lab facility newly located in Stillwater, OK.

“I am thrilled to serve in such an instrumental role for this innovative and groundbreaking facility,” said Dr. Kayser. “The OPCIE is the future of health sciences and effective public health response. It’s an honor to serve Oklahoma in this capacity, and I look forward to leading our state to the forefront of national pandemic preparedness and response.”

Dr. Kayser received much of his clinical education and training in Oklahoma, graduating from both of the state’s major universities, and is committed to advancing research and innovation for the future of public health for Oklahomans.

Additionally, he spent four years (2003-2007) studying biochemical genetics with the National Human Genome Research Institute in Washington, D.C., where the Human Genome Sequence, giving him a unique combination of expertise in both laboratory and clinical research.

After training in D.C. to gain laboratory experience, Kayser returned to Oklahoma in 2007 to work at the newly-constructed St. Francis Children’s Hospital, where he spent seven years expanding genetic services and launching advanced genetic laboratories aimed at improving diagnostic and treatment capabilities for newborns. He helped usher in the expansion and use of newborn screening in the state. This expertise and Dr. Kayser’s background will bring a wealth of knowledge to the state’s Public Health Lab, which tests every child born in the state for genetic disorders, early identification of which saves lives.

Throughout the course of his career, Kayser placed an emphasis on applying modern laboratory research into clinical practice. In 2014, he joined a team of national experts at Cancer Treatment Centers of America where he focused on treating late-stage and aggressive cancers using genetic testing insights.

“Dr. Kayser has an impressive and extensive background in advancing critical scientific research to mitigate the burden diseases impose on society,” said State Health Commissioner Dr. Lance Frye. “With his years of experience in advancing newborn screening in the clinical setting and knowledge of the laboratory setting, he is a rare combination. We believe that he is a great fit to lead the OPCIE and Public Health Lab, and will advance innovative research in our state to serve Oklahomans.”  


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