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Vaccine & Immunotherapy Center

Improving health around the globe by creating and advancing vaccines and immunotherapies

Vaccine and Immunotherapy Center

The Vaccine & Immunotherapy Center focuses the Institute’s strengths in immunology, virology and immune-oncology disciplines to improve public health around the globe through the creation of new and improved interventions and treatments for some of the most dangerous and widespread diseases.

Wistar has an exceptional track record of success in the areas of vaccine development as well as immunotherapy. Wistar scientists created the standard-of-care protections against rubella, rabies, and rotavirus, the type 1 attenuated polio strain, the diploid cells lines that allow production of MMR vaccine among other. More than 3 billion children have been protected by Wistar’s vaccines.

Top Wistar scientists lead the center’s efforts, working in collaboration with prominent institutions in the Philadelphia region as well as major research organizations around the country and the world. Research areas include:

  • VIRUSES, including Zika, HIV, HPV, MERS, Ebola, Influenza, rabies, and other emerging viral infections
  • MICROORGANISMS, addressing antibiotic-resistant bacteria, including Pseudomonas and MRSA (methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus), and protozoan diseases, such as malaria and toxoplasmosis

Another major focus of the Center is to generate new immune therapies for CANCER prevention or recurrence or for treatment. Cancer immune therapies targeting HPV-driven head and neck cancer as well as cervical cancer, have entered clinical trials. Novel immune therapies for prostate and pancreatic cancers, among others, are also in clinical study. The Vaccine & Immunotherapy Center brings together many outstanding researchers within the Institute to focus on new immune based approaches to induce protective tumor immunity, to control the tumor microenvironment, and to use humoral and cellular immunity to control or eliminate cancer.

Leadership and Members

David B. Weiner, Ph.D.
Executive Vice President
Director, Vaccine & Immunotherapy Center
W.W. Smith Charitable Trust Professor in Cancer Research

Luis J. Montaner, DVM, D.Phil.
Vice President, Scientific Operations
Herbert Kean, M.D., Family Endowed Chair Professor
Director, HIV-1 Immunopathogenesis Laboratory
Professor, Translational Tumor Immunology Program
Professor, Vaccine & Immunotherapy Center
Associate Director for Shared Facilities, Wistar Cancer Center

Hildegund C.J. Ertl, M.D.
Caspar Wistar Professor in Vaccine Research
Professor, Vaccine & Immunotherapy Center

Daniel Kulp, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Vaccine & Immunotherapy Center

Kar Muthumani, M.Sc, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Vaccine & Immunotherapy Center

Mohamed Abdel-Mohsen, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Vaccine & Immunotherapy Center

Farokh Dotiwala, M.B.B.S., Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Vaccine & Immunotherapy Center

Rajasekharan Somasundaram, Ph.D.
Research Assistant Professor, Vaccine & Immunotherapy Center

Contact Us

For more information on The Wistar Institute Vaccine & Immune Therapy Center, please contact:

Jeneice Hubert
The Wistar Institute
3601 Spruce Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104
215-898-0381
jhubert@wistar.org