Novel vaccine antigen to protect against pneumococcal diseases

My Ph.D. research is internationally recognized for its discovery and testing of the new protein molecule, Polyamine Transport Protein D (PotD) to immunize children against Streptococcus pneumoniae diseases. It is estimated that in 2000, approximately 14.5 million episodes of serious pneumococcal disease occurred, resulting in approximately 826, 000 deaths in children aged 1-59 months (). My work has been independently corroborated by multiple academic and government researchers, and PotD is currently being used by agencies in Brazil (, ), China () and the Gates Foundation/PATH (), to develop affordable vaccines for the prevention of pneumococcal diseases. Prior efforts to use protein-based vaccines were not successful as they only stimulated the human immune system, while immunization with PotD may also cripple the bacterial nutrient acquisition and virulence. In recognition of my contributions to public health, I was selected for the 2009 Raymond W. Sarber National Award from the American Society of Microbiology.

Peer-Reviewed Publications

  1. Mucosal immunization with polyamine transport protein D (PotD) protects mice against nasopharyngeal colonization with Streptococcus pneumoniae. 2009. [Abstract] [Full Paper]

    Pratik Shah, Briles DE, King J, Hale Y, Swiatlo E

    Experimental Biology and Medicine. PMID: 19176871

  2. Cellular location of polyamine transport protein PotD in Streptococcus pneumoniae. 2006. [Abstract] [Full Paper]

    Pratik Shah, Marquart M, Quin LR, Swiatlo E

    FEMS Microbiology Letters. PMID: 1690772

  3. Immunization with polyamine transport protein PotD protects mice against systemic infection with Streptococcus pneumoniae. 2006. [Abstract] [Full Paper]

    Pratik Shah, Swiatlo E

    Infection and Immunity. PMID: 16988268


  • 2009 - ASM News [PDF]

Select Talks

  • 2009 - Thesis defence: Role of Polyamine Biosynthesis and Transport in Streptococcus pneumoniae Pathogenesis, Physiology and Vaccine Design [Slides]


  • 2009 - Podcast of interview by American Society for Microbiology [Podcast]


  • 2009 - Raymond W. Sarber National Award. Philadelphia, PA.
  • 2009 - Charles C Randall Award
  • 2008 - Conference Award - American Society for Microbiology’s national meeting Boston, MA
  • 2006 - Conference Award - American Society for Microbiology’s national meeting Orlando, FL

Other Graduate School Research Areas