The Future of Pediatrics: From Research to Public Health

Please join our Third Annual International Symposium on May 15, from 9.30am ARG (7.30am CDT) until 1pm ARG (11am CDT), organized by the INFANT Foundation (Argentina), the Vanderbilt Vaccine Center from Vanderbilt University (USA), and the Pontificia Universidade Catolica do Rio Grande do Sul (Brazil). The symposium will be available on the web through live streaming.
From a translational medicine perspective, in a format understandable for students and physicians, world experts will discuss topics such as the effects of premature birth on lung health, novel discoveries on respiratory diseases, the role that your mother's obstetrician may play in the rest of your life, and provide a glimpse into the next generation of vaccines. Moreover, the symposium will offer a special presentation on the present and future of 3D printing and medicine. Effective pediatric practice demands translating scientific knowledge and technology into interventions with mensurable impact on public health. This symposium aims to contribute to bridge that gap.


Pediatric infectious diseases
Respiratory viruses, asthma and vaccines

• Old diseases require new vaccines.
• In developing countries, more infants die at their homes than at the hospital.
• We face new outbreaks of asthma and autoimmune diseases.
• The biggest threats to children’s health start during pregnancy.

We need new ideas:
• Computational development of vaccines.
• Infant and children mortality as priorities.
• 3D printing transforming healthcare and treatments.
• The obstetrician as the first pediatrician.
• Secondary effects of health development.


Renato Stein

Renato Stein, M.D., M.P.H., Ph.D., is Professor at the Department of Pediatrics, Catholic University of Rio Grande do Sul (Brazil) and coordinates the Research Laboratory on Pediatric Respiratory Infections at the Biomedical Research Institute and Graduate Program in Pediatrics and Child Health. His work focuses on both population-based and experimental studies on the role of early life viral infections in acute and recurrent respiratory events leading to asthma. Previously, he has been a research fellow at The Hospital for Sick Children (Toronto, Canada) and at the University of Arizona (USA).

Romina Libster

Romina Libster, M.D., M.P.H., is Staff Researcher and Head of the Clinical Research Program at Fundación INFANT in Argentina. She characterized the clinical manifestations of the H1N1 influenza virus amid the pandemic in 2009, and the monitored the evolution of the disease for the upcoming flu season in 2010, which she described in two NEngl JMed articles. In 2009 Dr. Libster joined the Vaccine Research Program at Vanderbilt University (USA) where she did her specialization in the field of vaccines and vaccine-preventable diseases.

John V. Williams

John V. Williams, M.D., is Associate Professor of Pediatrics and Associate Professor of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology at Vanderbilt University (USA). His laboratory focuses on the epidemiology, biology and immunology of human metapneumovirus. Current areas of study include animal models of hMPV infection and pathogenesis, strain diversity and immunogenicity of hMPV proteins, molecular diagnosis of viral infections and epidemiology of respiratory viruses.

Andrei Vazhnov

Andrei Vazhnov, M.P.P., is the Academic Director of Instituto Baikal (Argentina). He is strategic advisor to Trimaker, a company manufacturing 3D printers, and is the author of the book “3D printing: How is going to change the world”. Previously, he was the Chief Technology Officer and Vice President of Software Development at eMeta Corporation where he was responsible for overseeing engineering, quality assurance, and technical support teams. Prior to that, he worked as a Research Associate at Goldman Sachs and Engineering Director at Macrovision Corporation (USA).

James E. Crowe

James E. Crowe, Jr., M.D., is Professor of Pediatrics, Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology at Vanderbilt University (USA), also Ann Scott Carell Chair, and Director of the Vanderbilt Vaccine Center. His laboratory has a broad portfolio of work in the area of viral immunology and cell biology, with an aim to discovery of mechanisms important to develop new vaccines. The laboratory uses modern techniques in the field of antibody engineering and genetics to develop new antibodies and structure-based vaccines for viruses.

Marcus Jones

Marcus Jones, M.D., Ph.D., is Professor at the Institute of Biomedical Research of the Catholic University of Rio Grande do Sul (Brazil), and coordinator of the Laboratory of Respiratory Physiology. His work focuses on the impact of prematurity, respiratory infections and allergy in lung development in infants and children. He has published 57 articles with more than 1200 citations. Previously, he has been a research fellow at the Riley Hospital (Indianapolis, USA) and at Indiana University (USA).

Kathryn Edwards

Kathryn Edwards, M.D., is currently the Sarah H. Sell and Cornelius Vanderbilt Professor of Pediatrics at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine and directs the Vanderbilt Vaccine Research Program. Her research interests include evaluating the safety, immunogenicity, and efficacy of vaccines in adults and children, and measuring the impact of vaccines on the burden of disease in the population. Dr. Edwards has served on several CDC, NIH, and IDSA committees. In 2006, she received the IDSA Mentor Award for her exceptional work in guiding the career of infectious disease professionals. In 2008 she was elected to the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences. Dr. Edwards graduated from the University of Iowa College of Medicine and completed her pediatric residency and infectious disease fellowship at the Children’s Memorial Hospital, Northwestern University and her postdoctoral training in Immunology at Rush Medical School in Chicago.

Fernando Polack

Fernando Polack, M.D., is Professor of Department of Pediatrics at Vanderbilt University (USA) and Scientific Director of the INFANT Foundation (Argentina). His work focuses working in respiratory virus pathogenesis in both animal models and populations, including significant discoveries in vaccine development and translating mechanistic observations to/from other viral respiratory diseases, like the pathogenesis of severe pandemic influenza and atypical measles, and understanding of disease burden caused by pandemic influenza in children.

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