Matthew J. Memoli, M.D., M.S.

www.niaid.nih.gov_sites_default_files_styles_image_style_square_lg_public_0012223034_0.jpg Matthew Memoli is Director of the Laboratory of Infectious Diseases (LID) Clinical Studies Unit (CSU) at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) of the National Institute of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, Maryland. His research focuses on human influenza transmission and pathogenesis, as well as other respiratory viruses. He rose to national prominence in late 2021 because of his opposition, on scientific and bioethical grounds, to mandates for COVID-19 vaccines.1)2)3) It has been reported that Memoli had written Tony Fauci directly to voice his opposition to mass vaccination against COVID-19, as opposed to a more targeted approach to vaccination that focused on the elderly and other vulnerable groups. Memoli found vaccine mandates to be “extraordinarily problematic,” he wrote in the email to Fauci. “I think the way we are using the vaccines is wrong.”4) To date, Memoli is the only NIH official to publicly voice opposition to mass vaccination or to vaccine mandates.

Position at NIAID

Director of the Laboratory of Infectious Diseases (LID)
Clinical Studies Unit (CSU)
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)
National Institute of Health (NIH)
Bethesda, Maryland.

Research Focus

  • Human influenza pathogenesis
  • Influenza transmission and correlates of protection
  • Influenza and other viral human challenge models
  • Impact of Respiratory Viruses on at risk populations
  • Emerging infectious diseases


Bachelor's Degree in Biology - College of William and Mary - 1996
Masters Degree in Microbiology - Thomas Jefferson University - 1998
Masters Degree - St. George’s University School of Medicine - 2002
Residency - the Washington Hospital Center Georgetown University Internal Medicine Program

NIH Clinical Center Grand Rounds: "The Ethics of Vaccine Mandates" (December 1, 2021)

Dr. Memoli was one of the presenters at an NIH meeting titled "Ethics Grand Rounds: The Ethics of Vaccine Mandates" on Wednesday, December 1, 2021 where he made a bioethical and scientific case in opposition to mandatory Covid-19 vaccination.

Profile and Publications by Dr. Memoli on ResearchGate

In the News
Jenny Strasburg, “Vaccine-Mandate Debate Makes It to Federal Agency Where Fauci Works:The NIH, workplace of Dr. Anthony Fauci, has scheduled a seminar on the ethics of mandates featuring a senior researcher who is pushing back,” The Wall St. Journal, Nov. 7, 2021.;
3) , 4)
Adam Barnes, “Senior NIH expert pushes back on growing vaccine mandates: Matthew Memoli favors vaccinations in vulnerable populations but argues population level vaccination could hinder the development of a natural, robust immunity gained through infection,” The Hill, Nov. 8, 2021.;
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