MVAC Team

The MVAC Team (Mucosal Vaccine and Challenge) is led by Johns Hopkins School of Public Health Assistant Professor and CIR faculty member Dr. Kawsar Talaat. It conducts investigational vaccine studies for ETEC, Shigella, Cholera, Ebola and Influenza as well as challenge studies.  Learn more about the diseases they study by clicking on the links below.

Seasonal Influenza (Flu)

Seasonal Influenza (more commonly known as Flu), is a contagious respiratory illness that primarily infects the nose and throat and is caused by three virus types in humans (influenza A, B, and C). Influenza infection sickens some people more than others depending on age and health status. On average, seasonal flu causes 50-60 million infections and illnesses, 25 million physician visits, 200,000 hospitalizations and 36,000 deaths each year in the United States alone.

ETEC (Enterotoxigenic Escherichia Coli)

Escherichia coli (E. coli) is a bacterium that normally lives in the intestines of humans and animals. Most types of E. coli are harmless, however some cause disease. Enterotoxigenic E. coli (ETEC) is the most common cause of diagnosed travelers’ diarrhea. It is also a major cause of diarrheal disease in developing countries, especially among children.

Ebola

Ebola virus disease (EVD) is a serious illness that is often fatal in humans. The Ebola virus was identified during an outbreak in Zaire (now the Democratic Republic of Congo) in 1976. Once in humans it can spread very easily to others by direct contact with the bodily fluids of a living or deceased person who had Ebola, and through contaminated surfaces and objects.

Campylobacter

Bacteria of the genus Campylobacter, enteric pathogens, causes the zoonosis infection, Campylobacteriosis. Campylobacteriosis causes 25% of traveler's diarrhea and is extremely widespread, especially in countries without proper sanitization.  Diarrhea in American military alone, from diseases such as Campylobacteriosis, has caused medical costs totaling over 124 million dollars.