Top US virus expert Dr Anthony Fauci has spoken about how his daughters have been harassed due to his public statements about tackling the pandemic.
Dr Fauci, a member of the White House coronavirus task force, also told CNN he had personally received death threats.
As a result he said he had hired security to protect his family.
The top doctor has been at odds with President Donald Trump at several points during the pandemic.
“Getting death threats for me and my family and harassing my daughters to the point where I have to get security is just, I mean, it’s amazing,” Dr Fauci, who has become a household name in the US, said.
“I wish that they did not have to go through that,” he added. “I wouldn’t have imagined in my wildest dreams that people who object to things that are pure public health principles are so set against it… that they actually threaten you.”
He and his wife, bioethicist Dr. Christine Grady, have three adult daughters.
As head of immunology at the National Institutes of Health during the 1980s HIV/Aids epidemic, Dr Fauci, 79, has been in the line of fire before amid a public health crisis.
Over Dr Fauci’s five decades as a medical researcher, he has seen his effigy burnt, been called a “murderer” by protesters and had smoke bombs thrown outside his office window.
He has been involved in a number of public disagreements with President Trump during the coronavirus crisis.
Late last month, Dr Fauci called the president’s sharing of a video which included claims masks are not needed to fight Covid-19, “not helpful”.