Dr. Ozbun received a B.S. degree in Microbiology with a minor in Chemistry (1987) from Colorado State University. She earned her Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degree in Molecular Virology (1994) from Baylor College of Medicine. Thereafter, she completed a 4-year NIH NRSA-funded postdoctoral fellowship at the Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine.

Personal Statement

As a scientist, I have well over 25 years of experience in biomedical research focused on sexually transmitted human papillomavirus (HPV) infections and related pathologies. I am an internationally recognized molecular virologist and cell and cancer biologist with a translational program that spans from basic science research to efforts aimed at infection prevention and improving clinical outcomes. The NIH has continuously funded my research since 2002. I have also received substantial funding from industry and foundations. My current studies involve early HPV infection events and the regulation of HPV gene expression. I utilize monolayer cell culture, organotypic three-dimensional epithelial tissue cultures, and animal models for the study of anogenital and oral infections and their neoplastic conversion. Over the years my research program has grown in grant funding, productivity, and as a training environment for graduate students and postdoctoral fellows. I am aware of the importance of frequent communication among project members and of constructing realistic research plans, outcomes, timelines, and budgets. Trainees in my laboratory have the opportunity to work with animal models of papillomavirus infection and pathogenesis and are exposed to a variety of state-of-the-art techniques, including cell biology, tissue engineering, biochemical, and genetic approaches.

Areas of Specialty

Molecular Virology, Papillomavirus Infections, Epithelial Tissue Biology, Keratinocyte Biology, Tumor/Cancer Biology


PhD, Baylor College of Medicine, 1994 (Molecular Virology)
BS, Colorado State University, 1987 (Microbiology)

Achievements & Awards

1995-1997 NIH NRSA F32CA066316 Papillomavirus Vegetative Replication
1996 The Papillomavirus Workshop Award, 15th Intl, Papillomavirus Workshop, Brisbane, AU
2000 U.S. Patent 6,110,663: “Methods for Detecting, Titering, and Determining Susceptibility to Papillomavirus”
2006 Educational Excellence Award, University of New Mexico School of Medicine 2007 U.S. Patent 7,285,386: “RhPV as a model for HPV-induced cancers”
2009, -17,-18 Plenary Speaker at the International Papillomavirus Conferences
2009 Distinguished Alumna Award, Mesa State College, Grand Junction, CO USA
2011 TWiV Special Guest - This Week in Virology, Issue 126: “Wart’s up, doc?”
2013-present The Maralyn S. Budke Endowed Professorship, UNM Comprehensive Cancer Center
2021 William A. Rutala Award (Association for Professionals in Infection Control & Epidemiology) for the best abstract presented during the conference on disinfection, sterilization, or antisepsis
2022 Elected as a Fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology




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