Laura Edison Kallen

A young boy washes his hands at a handwashing station.
Jul 01, 2023
Handwashing with soap is easy, inexpensive, and it saves lives. Seems like common sense, but how does handwashing with soap actually work? Why can’t you just use water? What even is soap? To answer these questions, we’ll need to go back to school
Bifidobacterium image
Dec 16, 2021
The gut microbiome is an area of great interest for researchers and clinicians alike. While we know that the bacteria, viruses, and parasites that live in our gut have a huge impact on our health, we are still learning exactly which ones are most
Laboratory technician in Kenya looks in a microscope
Oct 06, 2021
E. coli, Shigella, Cryptosporidium, Salmonella. Among infected children, these gut pathogens can cause serious illness, long-term consequences such as stunted growth and weakened immunity, and, too often, death. That’s why scientists and advocates
Aug 30, 2021
As the lead of UNICEF’s Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) programs in Vanuatu, an island nation in the Pacific, Emily Rand feels she has a front row seat to climate change’s impacts on disease. Vanuatu is currently experiencing a dengue fever
In which MICs would rotavirus vaccines have the greatest benefit?
Aug 18, 2021
Rotavirus vaccines are the best way to prevent illness caused by rotavirus, the most common cause of severe and fatal diarrhea in children under 5 years of age. Since 2006, over 110 countries have introduced rotavirus vaccines in their national
Newborn Miles in a NICU incubator
Jul 30, 2020
Breast milk is probably the closest thing we have to a magic potion. It not only contains the perfect blend of nutrients for babies in the first 6 months of life, but it can also kill pathogens, boost a baby’s immunity, and regulate a baby’s sleep-
Palestinian infant receives ROTAVAC as part of routine immunization.
Feb 27, 2019
What’s better than one rotavirus vaccine? Four rotavirus vaccines. Having a robust and diverse global market of options for vaccines is beneficial in several ways – it lowers prices, stabilizes supply, gives countries more choices, and, ultimately
The 13th International Rotavirus Symposium brought together 280 rotavirus experts in Minsk, Belarus from 29-31 August, 2018.
Sep 07, 2018
Vaccines against rotavirus, the leading cause of severe and fatal diarrhea in young children worldwide, are a stunning global public health success story. Their development, evaluation, and introduction and scale-up in many low-income countries
Jun 20, 2018
From left to right: Laura Kallen, PATH; Roma Chilengi, CIDRZ; Hope Randall, PATH. See more photo booth images here.   Is advocacy my job?   That question was asked by presenter Dr. Roma Chilengi from the Centre for Infectious Disease Research,
May 30, 2018
If you have blood type A, you may be more at risk of diarrhea from enterotoxigenic E. coli (ETEC). This finding was just published in a human challenge model study in the Journal of Clinical Investigation—and it has potentially widespread
Apr 12, 2018
Australian virologist Professor Ruth Bishop, left, discovered rotavirus in 1973. Photo source: Murdoch Children's Research Institute website. Sep 06
Mar 19, 2018
The ROTAVAC® story The ROTAVAC® story began more than three decades ago in India, when researchers discovered an unusual strain of rotavirus that infected newborns without making them sick. Research teams working under the bilateral Indo-US Vaccine
Dec 20, 2017
You know what makes for a really memorable holiday?   Viral diarrhea.   This year, a few days before my family was due to arrive at my parents’ house for Thanksgiving, my mom came down with a very mild case of stomach flu. She recovered within a
Nov 10, 2017
If pneumonia and diarrhea—the two biggest infectious killers of children worldwide—were personified as serial killers, I imagine that they would look very different. Pneumonia might be tall and spindly, with long, wispy fingers. Diarrhea, on the
May 10, 2017
This week, I am in the beautiful Balkan country of Montenegro as part of a PATH workshop with immunization decision-makers from across Eastern Europe and Central Asia. The workshop aims to equip these leaders with new cost-effectiveness analysis
Dec 12, 2016
For non-technical viewers, data often lacks accessibility. But when data is broken down and refined through visualization, it can become a compelling storyteller and tool in evidence-based decision-making.   DefeatDD recently launched a data
View from Table Mountain in Cape Town, South Africa
Apr 20, 2016
Here at DefeatDD, we love our home planet. We love its mountains, oceans, and rivers, and the beautiful diversity of animals and humans that inhabit it. But on Earth Day and every day, we're thinking about poop. Everyone poops, and humans have
Oct 12, 2015
Official movie poster (copyright 20th Century Fox), with a few creative tweaks by Laura Edison.   With the recent NASA discovery of water on Mars, combined with the release of my new favorite movie, The Martian, Mars has been on my mind a lot
Jul 22, 2015
Photo credit: Hey, book lovers! As a follow up to our summer movie list, I thought I would develop my own list for the bookworms among us—an alternative summer reading list of books ranging from whimsical, to informative,
Apr 16, 2015
Me in December 1991, just a few weeks before getting sick. This post is part of the #ProtectingKids blog series. Read the whole series here. There was once a healthy little girl who, just a few months before her second birthday, started to feel