Laboratory of Infectious Diseases

Jeffrey I. Cohen, M.D., Chief

Established in 1942, the Laboratory of Infectious Diseases (LID) has a long history of vaccine development and identification of new agents of viral diseases. LID is noted for undertaking high-risk, high-re​ward programs that require extraordinary time and resource commitments, such as programs to develop vaccines for viral hepatitis, severe childhood respiratory diseases, viral gastroenteritis, flaviviruses, and herpesviruses.

Clinical studies complement LID’s major areas of research, including testing candidate vaccines in clinical trials, human challenge studies with influenza and respiratory syncytial virus to study pathogenesis and immune correlates for protection against these viruses, and studies of severe virus infections in persons without known immune deficiency.

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Examples of LID Accomplishments

  • The first approved hepatitis A vaccine in the US (Havrix) and a monoclonal antibody to respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) (Synagis).
  • A live, attenuated influenza vaccine, FluMist (Medimmune) developed by LID with participation of extramural NIAID.
  • Vaccines against potential pandemic influenza strains in collaboration with Medimmune tested in Phase I clinical trials.
  • The first approved rotavirus vaccine in the US (RotaShield). 
  • A bovine-human reassortant rotavirus vaccine, RotaSIIL used in India. A USPTO Patents for Humanity award to NIAID for RotaSIIL in 2018.
  • A recombinant live, attenuated RSV vaccine shown to be safe and immunogenic in 1- to 2-month-old infants and continuing in clinical trials.
  • A hepatitis E vaccine, licensed to GlaxoSmithKline, proved highly effective in preventing hepatitis E in a field trial in Nepal.
  • A vaccine candidate for West Nile virus was shown to be safe and immunogenic in young adults and in the elderly.
  • A tetravalent live, attenuated dengue virus vaccine in a Phase III clinical trial and licensed throughout the world.
  • A live, attenuated PIV3 vaccine passed Phase II safety trials in infants; PIV1 and PIV2 vaccine candidates generated.
  • A diagnostic for norovirus, RIDASCREEN, licensed.
  • Human volunteer influenza and respiratory syncytial virus challenge models developed for testing vaccines, immunotherapeutics, and antivirals.


The Laboratory of Infectious Diseases includes the following principal investigators, staff scientists, and/or staff clinicians:

Former Senior Investigators

Listing of former Senior Investigators with the Laboratory of Infectious Diseases

Former Senior Investigators
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