Lawrence Banks received his Degree in Science in 1981 and his PhD in Microbiology from Leeds University, UK in 1984. His term as Director-General of the ICGEB commenced on 1 July, 2019. Scientific Coordinator of the ICGEB from 2016 – June 2019 he has been Group Leader of the Tumour Virology Laboratory at ICGEB Trieste, Italy since 1990. From 1988-1990 he was an independent Research Scientist at the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research in London, UK and from 1984-1988, Post-doctoral Fellow at the Imperial Cancer Research Fund in London, UK.

He is Editor of the Journal of Virology, FEBS Journal, Papillomavirus Research, PLoS One, Frontiers Cellular Infection and Microbiology and is on the Editorial Boards of Antiviral Therapy, Virus Research and Biological Chemistry. Since 2017 he has been running Awareness Workshops in Academic Institutions across the ICGEB constituency and has organised over 15 major international workshops on Human Papillomavirus, Molecular Biology of Leishmania and DNA Tumor Viruses.

He has served on Grant Review and PhD Examination Committees of numerous scientific organisations in Italy and abroad, including the Human Frontiers Science Program, DKFZ, and WHO IARC, and is Research Degree Coordinator in Italy for the Open University UK. His current research interest focuses on Human Papillomaviruses (HPVs), the causative agents of a number of human tumours, including cervical cancer, which is a major cause of cancer-related death in women in many parts of the developing world.

His research activity is funded internationally through grants from public and private bodies, including the “Associazione Italiana per la Ricerca sul Cancro” AIRC and the Wellcome Trust. He has published over 220 papers in peer-reviewed, international journals. 

During his mandate he will focus on continuing to drive the Organisation’s transparent managerial structure, expanding interaction in the biotech sector in ICGEB Member States, advancing scientific research of the laboratories in Trieste, New Delhi and Cape Town and contributing to advanced education of young scientists to promote science and technology-intensive solutions to improve the quality of life.

Research Activity

Molecular biology of Human Papillomaviruses: virus entry pathways and induction of malignancy

Biographical information

Learn more about the Director-General’s career, activities and publications.

Bank's lab on twitter

Tumor Virology Lab

Link to the Tumor Virology lab on Twitter

Updates from the DG:

On 27-28 November 2023, ICGEB New Delhi, India hosted the first pan-ICGEB alumni meeting

ICGEB enters its 5th decade

“The ICGEB is an incredibly close-knit community – everything we do is intimately dependent upon the support and effort of all our colleagues.”
High level delegations from the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs visits ICGEB

“Together for the SDGs”

The theme of the campaign launched by the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs saw Trieste as protagonist this week, culminating with the visit of the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Edmondo Cirielli.
L-R: Prof. Arturo Falaschi, first Director-General of ICGEB, with Drs. Renu and Narendra Tuteja and Sen. Rita Levi Montalcini, Nobel laureate, visiting the Trieste labs in a historic moment.

40 years of ICGEB

September 2023 marks 40 years to the day of the establishment of the ICGEB through the signing of its Statutes at the United Nations in New York, USA; ICGEB continues to deliver on its mandate.
Lawrence Banks (second from left) with Alessandro Marcello and Mariano Garcia Blanco

Science Mission to China

July 2023: the ICGEB Scientific Committee, headed by the Director-General, was back at the China Medical City in Taizhou this month, location of the burgeoning ICGEB Regional Research Centre (RRC).
(L-R) Dr. Sandra Marcela Mayol, President of INTI, Lic. Daniel Filmus, Argentinian Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation, Dr. Banks, Dr. Yazdani, Eng. Jorge Schneebeli, Vice President of INTI

Mission to Argentina

Dr. Lawrence Banks, ICGEB Director-General is in ICGEB Member State Argentina from 27-28 March, 2023.