At Stanford University Medical Center, expertise in vaccine development runs deep. Prominent researchers here have helped develop or evaluate vaccines for influenza, rotavirus, chicken pox, shingles, prostate cancer, and lymphoma. Closely intertwined with vaccine research is immune system research. The Stanford Institute for Immunity, Transplantation, and Infection (ITI) seeks to understand and control how the immune system defends the body at the molecular and cellular levels. The following are a few examples of the efforts that are underway at ITI and Stanford in vaccine research:
- Cornelia Dekker, MD, Professor of Pediatrics and Medical Director of the Stanford-Lucile Packard Children's Hospital Vaccine Program is studying the side effects of licensed vaccines and developing recommendations for physicians caring for patients with adverse reactions.
- Mark Davis, PhD, Director of II and the Burt and Marion Avery Family Professor of Immunology, is working to better understand the decline of the immune system due to aging. A long-term goal of his study is to characterize the healthy immune system, finding benchmarks of normal functioning.
- Ed Engleman, MD, Director of the Stanford Blood Center, played a vital part in the development of a FDA-approved pathbreaking immunotherapy for treating late-stage prostate cancer.
- Ronald Levy, MD, the Robert K. and Helen K. Summy Professor in the School of Medicine, showed that monoclonal antibodies can cure patients with lymphoma. Dr. Levy's current research focuses on vaccines as a therapy for cancer, a new type of vaccine that fights disease instead of preventing it.
- Harry Greenberg, MD, the Joseph D. Grant Professor and senior associate dean for research at Stanford's School of Medicine, is internationally known for his virology research and was a central developer of a nasally applied influenza vaccine that is painless and easy to administer. Dr. Greenberg's research also focuses on vaccines for rotavirus. Rotavirus is most deadly in developing countries.