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Wednesday, May 12 2021
11:00am - 12:00pm
Virtual Event
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NanoFANS Virtual Spring Series: Session 2 | mRNA Vaccines and COVID-19 – The Start of a New Era of Vaccinology
Prof. Evan Anderson - Dept. of Pediatrics & Medicine, Emory School of Medicine

Abstract: The emergence of SARS-CoV-2 with the resultant COVID-19 pandemic resulted in the need to rapidly advance vaccine development.  New vaccine technologies, such as mRNA and viral-vectored vaccines, moved rapidly through the various stages of vaccine clinical trials to FDA Emergency Use Authorization within about 9 months of starting their Phase I clinical trial.  Older technologies, such as protein-based vaccines, still have not completed their US Phase 3 clinical trials.  The success of mRNA vaccines in opens the door for applying this technology to currently vaccine-preventable illnesses (e.g., influenza) and other novel vaccine development.  Fundamental basic immunological and clinical questions remain about mRNA vaccine technology that will need to be addressed for this technology to usher in a new era in vaccinology.

Bio:  Evan J. Anderson is Professor of Pediatrics and Medicine at Emory University School of Medicine.  He graduated summa cum laude from Wheaton College, IL after which he pursued his medical degree at the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine.  He remained at the University of Chicago for residency in both internal medicine and pediatric followed by an adult and a pediatric infectious diseases fellowship at Northwestern Memorial and Children’s Memorial Hospitals in Chicago.  As such, he is board certified in internal medicine, adult infectious diseases, pediatrics and pediatric infectious diseases and splits his clinical care between adults and children. He moved from Northwestern to Emory University in 2012 where is an attending physician at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta in pediatric infectious diseases and Emory University Hospital in adult infectious diseases. He serves as the lead investigator in Georgia for influenza, RSV, and COVID-19 surveillance for the CDC-funded Emerging Infections Program. He is currently one of the multiple PIs of the Emory University Vaccine and Treatment Evaluation Unit (VTEU) and has been intricately involved with COVID-19 vaccine clinical trials for Moderna and also Janssen.  He particularly enjoys mentoring trainees at all levels and received the Emory Department of Pediatrics Research Mentor Award in 2017. He has over 150 total publications with particular interest in rotavirus, RSV, influenza, COVID-19, early phase vaccine clinical trials, and the power of community protection.

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