Improving Global Health

VTC Researcher in Bangladesh holding baby with motherFaculty researchers at the Vaccine Testing Center (VTC) study human vaccines with the goal of understanding and preventing infectious diseases around the globe. The VTC is in the Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics, which bridges both the University of Vermont College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and the Larner College of Medicine.

Our team is particularly interested in new vaccines with the potential to prevent or control infectious diseases in developing countries. We are a diverse team of clinicians, study coordinators, scientists, and laboratory personnel. Volunteers are critical to our work and our human research studies are designed and performed with rigorous oversight and safety.


Lab Tech looking in microscope

The Vaccine Testing Center's team of scientists and researchers are committed to solving the world’s most pressing infectious disease challenges. Our research spans the translational spectrum from lab-based human immunology to domestic clinical trials to large-scale international field research. Together with national and international collaborators and local volunteers, we help develop vaccines to address global infectious diseases, including rotavirus, cholera, dengue and other flaviviruses. More VTC research.



At this time, we have filled all open spaces in our active clinical trials. Please check back in the future for further volunteer opportunities!

TGIR COBRETranslational Global Infectious Disease Center, Cute Tiger Scientist

The Translational Global Infectious Disease Research Center (TGIR) Center of Biomedical Research Excellence (COBRE) is funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). This innovative center will leverage UVM's substantial existing strengths in global infectious diseases research, complex systems and computational modeling to develop creative, translational approaches to prevent and control infectious disease around the world.

To learn more visit the TGIR website.


VTC Researchers speak about COVID vaccines in the U.S.

Benjamin Lee, M.D. Hear pediatrician and VTC researcher Benjamin Lee, MD, add to the story on local WCAX.

Dr. Kristen Pierce was recently interviewed on our local WPTZ 5 station. Hear what our expert has to say about the COVID vaccines currently in national Phase lll trials.

Dr. Beth Kirkpatrick, VTC Director, spoke recently to WCAX about the development and goals of a COVID vaccine in the U.S. See the interview on WCAX and the use of MRNA technologies in vaccines

Dr. Sean Diehl was recently interviewed on WCAX about his lab's development of an accurate, inexpensive, open-source serology test that can be used for large-scale tracking of the Coronavirus. The team is hopeful that the test can be put to good use to help Vermont and other states research and monitor the spread of COVID-19 among their populations. 

Staff & Faculty Honored for Professionalism

Please join us in congratulating two dynamic, dedicated members of our department who were recently honored during LCOM's Professionalism Week. Learn more about the awards.

Dean's Staff Award for Professionalism Recipient: Mary Claire Walsh, P.A., Researcher/Analyst, UVM Vaccine Testing Center; Physician Assistant, UVM Medical Center

Dean's Faculty Award for Professionalism Recipient: Kristen Pierce, M.D.'03, Professor of Medicine, Division of Infectious Disease


UVM and icddr,b Work to Address Dengue Surge

DiDI Team
Investigators from the International Centre for Diarrheal Disease Research, Bangladesh (icddr,b) in Dhaka, Bangladesh, and the Larner College of Medicine at the University of Vermont (UVM), are the first to study a promising tetravalent dengue vaccine in dengue-endemic Bangladesh. Their work, evaluating the single-dose tetravalent dengue vaccine candidate TV005, demonstrated safety and immune responsiveness in children and adults. The accompanying study was recently published in the journal The Lancet Infectious Diseases.

DiDI TeamThe UVM team, from left: Beth Kirkpatrick, MD; Sean Diehl, PhD; Md. Masud Alam, MBBS;  Marya Carmolli, Dorothy Dickson, MS; Mary-Claire Walsh, PA; Forida Nazib, Dan Bak, MD;  Kristen Pierce, MD

A Matter of Trust: Bringing Vaccine Education to New American Communities

Partners in the Community Education Sessions on the COVID-19 Vaccine gather in Zoom session, including  Bidur Dahal, Dr. Avila; Dr. Pierce; Sara Chesbrough, Doma Sherpa, Ms. Vastine;Ms. Merdzanovic; and Ms. Ratsebe.

Kristen Pierce, M.D., Vaccine Testing Center researcher and TGIR COBRE HPR Core Leader, has been working in collaboration with community leaders to bring vaccine education to New American communities in Vermont. To learn more about this effort, click here

Donations to the Vaccine Testing Center support groundbreaking research and clinical trials that improve people's quality of life and overall global health. More

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