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Studying Through A Microscope


The mission of the NIAID Respiratory Pathogens Research Center (RPRC) is to provide NIAID resources to conduct clinical and translational research activities to understand the etiology and impact of viral and bacterial respiratory pathogens, and to develop and evaluate strategies for their control, treatment, and prevention.

The RPRC is a multidisciplinary, collaborative, integrated, and iterative program consisting of a team of experienced investigators and technical staff with expertise in clinical research and laboratory methods, experience working with respiratory pathogens and the diseases they cause, immunological responses and assays, animal models, vaccinology, and clinical genomics, proteomics, and bioinformatics.

RPRC is comprised of faculty and staff from the University of Rochester, the University of Alabama, J. Craig Venter Institute, Oregon Health and Sciences University, the University of Massachusetts, Wake Forest University, and the University of Virginia.

Respiratory pathogens of primary focus include influenza viruses, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), human coronaviruses, human metapneumoviruses, parainfluenza viruses, Group A Streptococcus, Pneumococcus, Bordetella pertussis, as well as emerging and re-emerging respiratory pathogens.

Individual research projects focus on infant immune responses and disease after respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) infection, the impact of commensal and opportunistic infections on infant immune system development and lung function, studies on experimental and licensed influenza vaccines, pilot projects on non-TB mycobacterial infection and disease, influenza adaptation, and support for a Bacterial Respiratory Pathogen Reference Laboratory.


RPRC Innovation Research Program

The primary objective of the RPRC Innovation Research Program is to facilitate highly innovative research activities that take advantage of novel technologies and new research opportunities that respond to emergent issues in viral respiratory pathogens, focusing on high priority translational and/or clinical research. A major set of goals for the program is to:

  • Encourage new collaborations with investigators outside of the RPRC
  • Infuse the RPRC with novel technologies and approaches
  • Attract new faculty to the RPRC and to viral respiratory pathogens research
  • Assist junior faculty to develop productive research programs
  • Expand our funding in the area of translational research
  • Leverage discoveries and proof-of-concept to attract independent extramural research support