Members of the Division of Pediatric Infectious Diseases actively perform research ranging from basic science to epidemiology, public health, hospital infection control, and clinical trials of anti-infectives and vaccine development. Three research initiatives exist within the division: viral pathogenesis, bacterial pathogenesis, and an epidemiology and clinical research group. Collaborating basic scientists are found in Departments of Microbiology, Cell Biology, Physiology, Medicine, Epidemiology, the Mailman School of Public Health, the School of Nursing, and the Clinical Microbiology Laboratory.
Division members are all engaged in teaching medical students and residents. The group performs daily bedside consultations on patients with infectious disease problems and also meets weekly to conduct teaching rounds with postdoctoral fellows, residents, and students.
The division has had a growing collaboration with the Center for Interdisciplinary Research in Antimicrobial Resistance (CIRAR). This Center, headed by Dr. Elaine Larson of the Columbia University School of Nursing, focuses on projects with interdisciplinary co-investigators from a wide range of disciplines at Columbia University, including medicine, pediatrics, epidemiology, nursing, economics, and biostatistics. Current projects include studies of multidrug-resistant gram negative infections among ICU patients and antimicrobial stewardship, particularly involving Drs. Lisa Saiman and Sameer Patel. In addition, the division has established a Clinical Research Program headed Dr. Natalie Neu to support the startup and execution of clinical research. A dedicated program manager, experienced investigators, and research coordinators are available to provide infrastructure clinical expertise and administrative coordination for all clinical research performed within the division and with investigators from other specialties participating in collaborative research. This program supports industry, government, foundation, and investigator-initiated research in antimicrobial agents, vaccines, epidemiology, and Infectious Diseases-related technology.
Division members also participate in the Clinical Immunization Safety Assessment (CISA) Network is a collaborative effort between the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) and seven clinical centers in the United States. Dr. LaRussa is the Director of the Columbia University CISA Network site. The primary goals of the network are to improve the scientific understanding of vaccine safety issues through research and to serve as a source of clinical expertise in the evaluation of adverse events following immunization. Research in clinical care for HIV-infected patients is carried out under the NIH sponsored IMPAACT program, particularly involving Drs. Philip LaRussa, Marc Foca, and Anne Gershon.
Division members also staff study sections and have been awarded a T32 NIH training grant for teaching and mentoring fellows interested in careers in infectious diseases.