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The Aerosol & Mucosal ​Vaccination community is comprised of individuals from different Institutions worldwide and includes the following members:​​

Dr Helen McShane

Co-Chair

​Helen McShane is currently Director of the NIHR Oxford Biomedical Research Centre; Professor of Vaccinology at Oxford University; Deputy Head (Translation and Personnel), Medical Sciences Division; and an Honorary Consultant Physician in infectious diseases.

Helen obtained an intercalated BSc in 1988, followed by a degree in medicine in 1991 (both University of London). In 1997 She was awarded an MRC Clinical Training Fellowship to undertake a PhD with Adrian Hill in Oxford, and was later awarded a PhD in 2001 (University of London). In 2001 she was awarded a Wellcome Clinician Scientist Fellowship, allowing her to complete her clinical training and subsequently awarded a CCST in HIV and GU Medicine in 2003. In 2005 and 2010, she was awarded a Wellcome Senior Clinical Research Fellowship. She currently holds a Wellcome Trust Investigator Award.

Since 2001, Helen has lead a TB vaccine research group at the University of Oxford. She led the development of MVA85A, the first new TB vaccine candidate to enter efficacy testing. Current areas of focus include the development of controlled human mycobacterial challenge models, aerosol delivery of vaccines and immunomonitoring in clinical trials. She collaborates with several research groups across Africa in TB vaccine clinical trials.

Dr Rajko Reljic

Co-Chair

Dr. Rajko Reljic, St George’s University of London, UK

TB is predominantly a lung disease and mucosal vaccine delivery is potentially the most effective mode of immunisation against the infection. Dr Reljic is involved in developing and testing of a number of mucosal vaccine candidates for TB as boost to BCG. This involves the use of several mucosal vaccine delivery systems, including nanoparticles, inactivated bacterial spores, liposomes and self-adjuvanting recombinant immune complexes. The main feature of these new vaccine candidates is that they are designed to target specific cell surface receptors and tissues in the mucosa of the lung in order to improve vaccine delivery and induce appropriate immune responses. Dr Reljic is also focused on immunotherapy of TB and MDR-TB using monoclonal IgA antibodies and cytokines.

Dr Reljic obtained his PhD at King’s College London and after that undertook post-doctoral fellowships at University of Cambridge and King’s College London, before joining St George’s in 2007. He is currently Associate Professor of Immunology and Course director for Masters in Research in Biomedical Sciences program. He is the scientific lead and the coordinator of the EMI-TB consortium, an EU-funded TB vaccine initiative that involves 14 research groups from Europe and Africa and member of the H2020 BACTIVAC consortium. He is one of the management board members of the UK-MRC funded network VALIDATE for intracellular pathogens including MTB.


Members

Dr Aurelio Bonavia

Aurelio Bonavia has hands-on experience in vaccine, antibodies and small molecules development. His work has focused in respiratory viruses, biodefense viruses and Tuberculosis/HIV in Translational Development and CMC. Aurelio clinical experience spans Phase 1, Phase 2a Human Challenges and POC Phase 2. Work with Tuberculosis focused on understanding aerosol as an important route of administration for a potential alternative for TB vaccine using viral vectors and whole cell vaccines. Experience with small and large animal model development for infectious diseases. Aurelio received his PhD from University of Colorado Health Sciences Center for his work in Human Coronavirus and carried his postdoctoral work in HIV at Johns Hopkins. Aurelio previously worked at Functional Genetics, Novartis, Theraclone , Aeras and is currently Senior Director, Clinical Development at Vir Biotechnology.

Dr Jo Kirman

Joanna Kirman is Associate Professor in immunology at the University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand. Joanna completed her PhD thesis through the University of Otago and the Malaghan Institute, in the laboratory of Prof Graham Le Gros. She was awarded a Fogarty Postdoctoral Fellowship where she undertook research on tuberculosis vaccine development at the Vaccine Research Center at the National Institutes of Health, USA in the laboratory of Dr Robert A Seder. Joanna returned to the Malaghan Institute in New Zealand in 2002 to lead the Infectious Diseases group as a Sir Charles Hercus Research Fellow, supported by the Health Research Council of NZ, and from 2009-2012 as the Wellington Medical Research Foundation Malaghan Haematology Research Fellow. In 2012 Joanna joined the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at the University of Otago, where she works on deciphering the mucosal immune response to mycobacteria. At present her research is focused on how the BCG vaccine for tuberculosis enhances innate immune responses that can protect against tuberculosis and whether these innate immune responses can exhibit features of immunological memory.

Dr Philip Kuehl

Philip Kuehl holds a bachelor’s degree in biochemistry of Hamline University in St. Paul, MN. He completed his PhD at the University of Arizona, College of Pharmacy in Pharmaceutical Sciences in 2007. After completing his degree Philip joined the Applied Sciences Program at Lovelace Biomedical, where he has worked since 2007. Dr. Kuehl is currently a Senior Scientist and the Director of Scientific Core Laboratories.

Dr. Kuehl’s research interests are in the area of inhalation formulation and its effects on deposition, pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics. These aerosol formulations have included therapeutic (small/large molecule protein/peptide, DNA/RNA and cell/gene therapy), disease inducing (LPS, bleomycin, etc.) and infectious aerosols. A primary focus of Dr. Kuehl's research is understanding and quantifying pulmonary dose in clinical and non-clinical experiments.

Dr. Kuehl is a current member of the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists, Association of Inhalation Toxicologists, American Chemical Society, American Association of Aerosol Researchers and International Society for Aerosols in Medicine. He is also currently an Adjunct Professor at the University of New Mexico, College of Pharmacy and on the executive committee for the AAPS Inhalation and Nasal Technology Focus Group. Philip also serves as an ad-hoc reviewer for several inhalation and pharmaceutical science based journals and is on the editorial board for the Journal of Aerosol Medicine and Pulmonary Drug Delivery.

Dr Steffen Stenger

Steffen Stenger is Professor of Medicine, specialized in Medical Microbiology, Infection Control and Hospital Hygiene. He is Director of the laboratory for Medical Microbiology and responsible for the implementation of antibiotic stewardship at the University Hospital Ulm. As such he is directly involved in the diagnosis and treatment of patients with tuberculosis. Over the past 20 years Dr. Stenger´s laboratory focused on understanding effector mechanisms of the human immune system against Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Major focus of the research was the identification and functional characterization of antimicrobial T cell subsets. Together with Dr. Modlin he participated in the identification of granulysin as an antimicrobial effector molecule of human CD8+ cytotoxic T cells. Translational studies involving large, well-defined patient cohorts demonstrated that granulysin-expressing effector memory T cells contribute to protection in human tuberculosis. He is member of the steering committee of the “TBornotTB” consortium funded by the German Ministry for Research to set up the first comprehensive German cohort of tuberculosis patients and their close contacts to identify risk factors for transmission of disease. His current scientific focus is to understand local immunity in tuberculosis at the site of disease. This includes studies on the interaction of human cells obtained from bronchoalveolar lavage with virulent Mycobacterium tuberculosis as well as the identification and functional optimization of antimicrobial peptides from human lung. Steffen served as founder and co-chair of the CTVD research community “Aerosol & Mucosal Vaccination” until 2018.

Dr Jordi Torrelles

Jordi B. Torrelles is currently the Lead of the Population Health program, Director of the Biosafety Level III program, and Professor at Texas Biomedical Research Institute, San Antonio, TX, USA.

Jordi obtained his BSc in 1996, followed by a M.Sc. and Ph.D. in 2000 and 2003, respectively, both at the University Autonomous of Barcelona (but performing his studies at Colorado State University). In 2003, he moved to perform his post-doctoral studies at The Ohio State University (OSU), where he obtained the James V. Warren Award as recognition of outstanding and excellence in research in 2006. In 2008, he was awarded with the Parker B. Francis fellowship in Pulmonary Research; and obtained a NIH/NIAD K99/R00 pathway to independence award, followed by the OSU College of Medicine Faculty Achievement Award in 2015.

Since 2008, Jordi has focused his research in understanding the impact of the human lung mucosa in Mycobacterium tuberculosis pathogenesis and aerosol vaccination. Specific areas of focus include the impact of the human lung mucosa in respiratory infections affecting the elderly, HIV infected and diabetic populations; the improvement of the BCG vaccine via aerosol delivery; and the development of tuberculosis (TB) diagnostic tests to monitor treatment success in drug resistant TB patients. He is currently collaborating with several research groups across Central America, Asia, and Africa in drug resistant TB diagnostic pilot studies.

Dr Zhou Xing

Zhou Xing is Professor in McMaster Immunology Research Centre, Department of Pathology and Molecular Medicine, and Michael G. DeGroote Institute for Infectious Disease Research, McMaster University, Canada.

Zhou completed his training and practiced in Medicine in North Sichuan Medical College of China and subsequently in Anatomic Pathology in Tongji Medical University of China before moving to Canada in 1987. He obtained his Ph.D in Immunology at McMaster University in 1993. He has worked at McMaster University as a faculty member since 1996.

Zhou’s research focuses on respiratory mucosal immunity, innate immune memory, memory T cells, and mucosal TB vaccine strategies. He’s investigating the utilization and mechanisms of respiratory mucosal TB immunization with recombinant human and chimpanzee adenoviral-vectored vaccines. He’s also involved in developing spray-dried viral vaccine and inhaled aerosol vaccine technologies, and clinical TB vaccine trials. He’s an author of more than 180 peer-reviewed publications.

Dr Warwick Britton

Dr Troy Randall

Dr Chad Roy