Lifting Lives

Health Solutions for Vulnerable Populations

Thursday, October 1

The Next Great Frontier: COVID Vaccine Development

LIVE VIRTUAL EVENT 11 – 12 pm ET

The Next Great Frontier: COVID Vaccine Development will explore the challenges and the possibilities of vaccine development, such as the unprecedented speed at which COVID vaccine development is advancing; the expected challenges such as efficacy, public hesitancy, and access; and an introduction of the Human Immunomics Initiative (HII). After a brief welcome and opening remarks, expert panelists will discuss health equity and vaccine development, the role of the immune system in vaccine development, the race to develop a vaccine, and vaccine hesitancy. All Harvard Chan alumni are invited and encouraged to tune in.

Watch the event


Photo of thursday event speakersFeatured Panelists

Jaap Goudsmit, MD, PhD
Adjunct Professor of Epidemiology and Infectious Diseases
Senior Vice President and CSO, Human Vaccine Project

Albert Hofman, MD, PhD
Stephen B. Kay Family Professor of Public Health and Clinical Epidemiology
Chair, Department of Epidemiology

Michael Mina, MD, PhD
Assistant Professor in Immunology and Infectious Disease at Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health
Member, Center for Communicable Disease Dynamics (CCDD)
Associate Medical Director in Clinical Microbiology (molecular diagnostics), Department of Pathology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School

Julia Wu, SD ’13 
Research Scientist, Department of Epidemiology

Moderated by Sri Sastry, MPH ’90
Ophthalmologist, Bethesda Retina, LLC
Chair, Harvard Chan Board of Dean’s Advisors


Harvard Chan Frontiers: Conquering Epidemics, Reimagining Aging
Learn more about the Frontiers here. 


About the speakers

Jaap Goudsmit, MD, PhD
Adjunct Professor of Epidemiology and Infectious Diseases
Senior Vice President and CSO, Human Vaccine Project

Jaap Goudsmit, M.D., Ph.D., is a Dutch scientist, well-known for his research in the fields of HIV and influenza. During his career, Goudsmit published 560 scientific publications in peer-reviewed journals, nine of which appeared in Science, most recently in 2017, and six in Nature. Goudsmit was among the first in 1986 to discover that the amount of HIV in the blood predicted progression to clinical A.I.D.S. In 1989 Goudsmit discovered that HIV neutralizing antibodies target the V3 loop in the HIV envelope, a component closely linked with the virulence of HIV. 

In 2002 Goudsmit joined Crucell, a biotechnology company in Leiden, Netherlands, as chief medical officer and executive vice-president of vaccine research and development. He and his team discovered adenovirus vector-based vaccines against Ebola and HIV, and a monoclonal antibody cocktail against rabies. Goudsmit discovered influenza hemagglutinin stem antibodies, which protect against A and B strains of Influenza, in 2006. 

When Crucell was acquired by Johnson & Johnson in 2011, Goudsmit became head of the Crucell Vaccine Institute of Janssen, an institute focusing on influenza vaccine research. In 2015, he became global head of the Janssen Prevention Center, that focuses on the prevention of non-communicable diseases with a special emphasis on prognostic markers for age-related diseases. In 2017, Goudsmit retired from Johnson & Johnson. 

Goudsmit was professor of virology from 1989-2001 at the University of Amsterdam, where he was one of the principal investigators of the Amsterdam Cohort Studies on HIV infection and AIDS among homosexual men and IV drug users. From 2001-2016, he was professor of vaccinology and immunoprophylaxis at the University of Amsterdam. In 2016, Goudsmit was appointed adjunct professor of epidemiology at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. In 2016, Goudsmit also received an honorary degree from Vrije University and the Vrije University Medical Center (Netherlands) for his lifetime of scientific achievements in both academia and the biopharmaceutical industry. 

Albert Hofman, MD, PhD
Stephen B. Kay Family Professor of Public Health and Clinical Epidemiology
Chair, Department of Epidemiology

Albert Hofman, MD, PhD is the Chair of the Department of Epidemiology and the Stephen B. Kay Family Professor of Public Health and Clinical Epidemiology at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health in Boston, Massachusetts (USA). Dr. Hofman was the chairman of the department of Epidemiology of the Erasmus Medical Center/Erasmus University Rotterdam, The Netherlands, from 1988 until 2016. He has been science director of the graduate school Netherlands Institute for Health sciences (Nihes) since its start in 1990 until 2015. 

Dr. Hofman is the initiator and principal investigator of two population based, prospective cohort studies in the city of Rotterdam, the Netherlands: the Rotterdam Study and the Generation R study. Data-collection for these studies started in 1990 and 2002, respectively. These cohort studies have in common that they target multiple common diseases, have a very extensive and state-of-the-art assessment of the putative determinants of these diseases, and employ as much as possible new technologies to be applied in the setting of epidemiologic population studies. 

Michael Mina, MD, PhD
Assistant Professor in Immunology and Infectious Disease at Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health
Member, Center for Communicable Disease Dynamics (CCDD)
Associate Medical Director in Clinical Microbiology (molecular diagnostics), Department of Pathology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School

Michael Mina, MD, PhD is an Assistant Professor in Immunology and Infectious Disease at Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health and a core member of the Center for Communicable Disease Dynamics (CCDD). He is also the Associate Medical Director in Clinical Microbiology (molecular diagnostics) in the Department of Pathology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School. 

He earned his MD and PhD degrees from Emory University, with doctoral work split between CDC, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, the Respiratory and Meningeal Pathogens Research Unit in Johannesburg, South Africa and the Emory Vaccine Center. He completed his post-doctoral work at Princeton University in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology (of infectious disease dynamics) with Prof. Bryan Grenfell and at Harvard Medical School in the Department of Genetics with Prof. Stephen Elledge. He completed his residency training in clinical pathology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital / Harvard Medical School. 

Michael’s research combines mathematical and epidemiological models with high-throughput phage-display based serological laboratory investigations, including development of new technologies and statistical pipelines to better understand the population and immunological consequences and patterns underlying infectious diseases. 

Julia Wu, SD ’13 
Research Scientist, Department of Epidemiology

Moderator Sri Sastry, MPH ’90
Ophthalmologist, Bethesda Retina, LLC
Chair, Harvard Chan Board of Dean’s Advisors

Dr. Srinivas Sastry is an ophthalmologist in private clinical practice in Bethesda, Maryland. As a retina specialist, he cares for patients with diabetic retinopathy and age-related macular degeneration, which are leading causes of blindness worldwide. He has a special interest in global health and prevention of blindness and advises hospitals, international projects, private industry, and startup companies in translating new and evolving technology into clinical use in the field. Among his interests are the application of mobile technology, artificial intelligence, and deep learning in the early detection and prevention of disease.

He is the past chair of ophthalmology and past chair of the Department of Surgery of Suburban Hospital, Bethesda, Maryland (a member of Johns Hopkins Medicine). He is also on Suburban Hospital’s credentials committee and laser safety committee and is an attending surgeon specializing in complex retinal diseases and ocular trauma.

Dr. Sastry is a member of the Harvard Chan School’s Nutrition Round Table Steering Committee, and he supports the Sastry Harvard iLab Innovation Fellowship, as well as the Sastry Global Health and Health Policy Fellowship.