- Author: Kathy Keatley Garvey
COVID-19 vaccines--in addition to saliva tests and sewage tests--will be covered at the UC Davis COVID Symposium on Wednesday, Jan. 13.
The new addition to the panel is UC Davis Health physician Stuart Cohen, chief of the Division of infectious diseases and director, Hospital Epidemiology and Infection Control, "who is running vaccine trials will answer your questions about vaccines," said UC Davis Distinguished Professor Walter Leal, the organizer and moderator.
Registration is underway at https://bit.ly/2Li9pnV. The public is invited to submit advance questions and also may ask questions during the symposium via the Zoom chat.
“Dr. Cohen is leading a Phase 3 clinical trial of the Novavax vaccine called NVX-CoV2373,” said Leal. “This vaccine has a subunit from the spike protein in SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, and it's combined with an adjuvant, a boosting agent to improve the body's immune response to the vaccine."
UC Davis Chancellor Gary May will deliver the opening remarks. UC Davis scientists Richard Michelmore, Nam Tran and Heather Bischel will explain the COVID tests underway at UC Davis and the Davis community and answer questions. A new addition to the panel is UC Davis Health physician Stuart Cohen, chief of the Division of infectious diseases and director, Hospital Epidemiology and Infection Control, "who is running vaccine trials will answer your questions about vaccines," Leal said.
Free COVID-19 saliva tests are being administered by appointment to the Davis community--those who live in Davis or work at UC Davis--at testing kiosks on campus. It is a rapid, comprehensive laboratory-developed test that detects whether a person is currently infected with the coronavirus. The UC Davis Genome Center processes the saliva samples. Technically, the test uses a high throughput, real time, quantitative polymerase chain reaction protocol run on machines repurposed from the agricultural genetics industry.
The symposium also will cover how the COVID-19 tests administered in an hospital emergency room or at bedside can distinguish between whether a patient has COVID-19 or the flu. In addition, wastewater surveillance tests, also known as sewage tests, are underway to detect the virus.
Viewers also will learn about “Healthy Davis Together,” a program partnering UC Davis with the City of Davis to prevent the spread of the virus and “to facilitate a coordinated and gradual return to regular city activities and reintegration of UC Davis students back into the Davis community.”
Chancellor Gary May, Ph.D.
He became the seventh UC Davis chancellor on Aug. 1, 2017. A native of St. Louis, Mo., he received his bachelor's degree in electrical engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology in 1985 and his master's degree and doctorate in electrical engineering and computer science from UC Berkeley in 1987 and 1991, respectively. Prior to becoming the UC Davis chancellor, he served as the dean of the Georgia Tech College of Engineering from July 2011-June 2017 and as the Steve W. Chaddick School Chair of the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering from May 2005-June 2011. His resume also includes executive assistant to Georgia Tech President G. Wayne Clough from 2002-2005.
Heather Bischel, Ph.D.
Bischel holds degrees in civil and environmental engineering. She received a bachelor's degree from UC Berkeley in 2005, a master of science degree from Stanford University in 2007, and a doctorate from Stanford University in 2011. She served as a postdoctoral scientist at the National Science Foundation Engineering Research Center for Reinventing the Nation's Urban Water Infrastructure (2011-2012) and the Laboratory of Environmental Chemistry at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (2012-2017).
Richard Michelmore, Ph.D.
Nam Tran, Ph.D.
Stuart Cohen, M.D.
He received his bachelor of science degree from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, in 1974 and his medical degree from Chicago Medical School in 1978. He completed his residency in internal medicine at the University of New Mexico from 1978-81 and a fellowship in infectious diseases at the UC Davis Medical Center, 1981-1983. He is board-certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine and the American Board of Internal Medicine, Infectious Disease.
This is the fourth in a series of COVID-19 symposiums that Leal has organized and moderated since April. A query from one of Leal's students prompted the Jan. 13 symposium.
- Author: Kathy Keatley Garvey
UC Davis distinguished professor Walter Leal of the Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, College of Biological Sciences, is organizing and moderating the public awareness project.
The public is invited to submit advance questions here, https://bit.ly/2z4ULdw, where they can also register to attend via Zoom. Registrants will be provided a link to the free symposium and a reminder. The COVID-19 project also will be live-streamed free on Leal's Biochemistry Channel on YouTube at http://covidactionplan.com/
“It is heartbreaking to hear the number of people dying every day,” said Leal, who also coordinated a 2016 public awareness symposium on the UC Davis campus on the mosquito-borne Zika virus. “We have well-qualified people to address questions from the populace, so I thought I would put my organizing skills and experience with modern teaching technologies at the service of the public.”
Chancellor May, who has served as chancellor since Aug. 1, 2017, leads the most comprehensive campus in the University of California system, with four colleges and six professional schools. He regularly updates the campus community on the coronavirus pandemic/. Globally, the research-oriented Johns Hopkins University of Medicine, Baltimore, maintains a Covid-19 dashboard on its website.
The main speakers are UC Davis physician-scientists Emanuel Maverakis, Stuart Cohen and Nathan Kuppermann; UC Davis veterinarian-scientist Nicole Baumgarth; physician Ron Chapman, Yolo County Health Officer; and pediatrician State Sen. Richard Pan, District 6 chair, Senate Committee on Health.
Maverakis is a professor in the Departments of Medical Microbiology and Immunology, and Dermatology, UC Davis School of Medicine. A fellow of the California Academy of Sciences, he is known for its work in the field of predictive modeling, as well as for the development of novel analysis tools for immunogenetics. He received a National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director's New Innovator Award, and a Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers from President Barack Obama.
Cohen is professor and chief of Division of Infectious Diseases and director of Hospital Epidemiology and Infection Control, UC Davis School of Medicine. He specializes in clinical infectious diseases and infection control in the hospital environment.
Chapman, the Yolo County Health Officer, is also a health strategist consultant focused on helping health departments build quality improvement and performance management systems. He earlier served as director and State Health Officer, California Department of Public Health.
Kuppermann, an emergency physician for UC Davis Health, is professor and chair, Department of Emergency Medicine, UC Davis School of Medicine. The recipient of the Academic Senate's 2020 Faculty Research Award, Kuppermann is member of the National Academy of Medicine and principal investigator of the Pediatric Emergency Care Applied Research Network.
Baumgarth is a professor in the Center for Comparative Medicine, and the Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology, UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine. The Baumgarth laboratory investigates the basic immunological mechanisms that regulate and control immunity to pathogens.
State Sen. Pan, who represents the Sacramento region and chairs the Senate Health Committee is in close contact with the California Department of Public Health and monitoring the response to novel coronavirus outbreak. "Public health is about keeping our neighborhoods safe and healthy," he said in a press release on his website. "The COVID-19 pandemic is a stark reminder of the cost of not having a robust public health system in place. Our leaders need to be listening to public health experts and sharing accurate health information to save lives. Everyone deserves to live a long and healthy life in a safe environment."
In addition to the main speakers, presenters will provide information on such topics as face masks and modeling systems. You-Lo Hsieh, distinguished professor, UC Davis Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering, and an expert on textiles and clothing, will explain the differences between regular masks, surgical masks, and N95 masks, plus what the public can do when masks are unavailable. She researches polymer chemistry, fiber engineering and bio-based materials.
James R. Carey, UC Davis distinguished professor of entomology and an authority on population biology and scientific modeling, will share his expertise. He served as the principal investigator of a 10-year, $10 million federal grant on “Aging in the Wild,” encompassing 14 scientists at 11 universities. Carey co-authored, with Deborah Roach of the University of Virginia, the newly published book, Biodemography: An Introduction to Concepts and Methods<, published Jan. 7 by the Princeton University Press. It is described as “an authoritative overview of the concepts and applications of biological demography.” (See news story.)
Leal, a former professor and chair of the UC Davis Department of Entomology (now the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology), is the newly selected recipient of the Distinguished Achievement Award in Teaching, given by the Pacific Branch, Entomological Society of America, and the recipient of the 2020 Distinguished Teaching Award for Undergraduate Teaching, sponsored by the UC Davis Academic Senate./span>