School of Medicine

Pediatrics Infectious Diseases

Research

Members of our Division are engaged in a wide range of research projects. Some highlights are below. For more detail, please also see our publications.

Antibiotic Stewardship and Prescribing Patterns

Our stewardship investigators, Dr. Adam HershDr. Emily ThorellDr. Andrew Pavia, and infectious diseases pharmacist Jared Olson are participating in studies to improve stewardship in urgent care centers, and outpatient practices. We are investigating the impact of antibiotic allergies and allergy de-listing on antibiotic use and outcomes. After completing a cluster-randomized trial of antimicrobial stewardship interventions in 15 small hospitals associated with Intermountain Healthcare, we are launching a tele-stewardship initiative to provide stewardship support for pediatric providers throughout the region. We also conduct multi-center evaluations of antibiotic stewardship’s impact on economic and clinical outcomes in pediatric care. We use national databases to understand antibiotic prescribing patterns in pediatric care and to evaluate the impact of interventions designed to improve the quality and safety of prescribing in pediatric care.

Clinical Pharmacology

Dr. Krow Ampofo conducts a number of clinical trials in collaboration with colleagues in the Clinical Trials Office and Clinical Pharmacology Group, including studies of intravenous zanamivir, brincidofovir, valganciclovir and ceftaroline.

Epidemiology of Invasive Bacterial Infections 

We use longitudinal collections of invasive bacterial isolates and the comprehensive electronic data warehouse of our partners at Intermountain Healthcare to perform a variety of studies of invasive infections with Streptococcus pneumoniae, Haemophilus influenzae and Streptococcus pyogenes.

Diarrheal Disease

In collaboration with Dr. Daniel Leung and collaborators around the world, we are developing predictive models deployed as apps to help clinicians decide on the probable etiology and improve management of children with diarrhea in both developed countries and low and middle income countries. We are participating in a multi-center study to prevent the development of hemolytic uremic syndrome in children with Shigatoxin-producing E. coli (STEC).

Influenza and Respiratory Viral Infections

We study the epidemiology of respiratory viral infections, the role and impact of using viral diagnostics, and interactions between respiratory viruses and bacterial infections. Dr. Krow Ampofo is conducting a multiyear study of the frequency and economic impact medical encounter following RSV infection.

Febrile Infants

Dr. Emily Thorell is continuing our decades-long research on epidemiology, etiology, and management of infants with fever who are younger than 90 days old.

Molecular Diagnostics 

Dr. Anne Blaschke's lab has developed and extended novel molecular testing strategies to assist in the understanding of the pathogen-based epidemiology of invasive bacterial disease in children. The lab focuses on the development of improved rapid diagnostic tests for the management of bacterial and viral infections in a variety of settings and specimens, including blood, pleural fluid, CSF, and joint fluid.

Molecular genomics of Strep pneumoniae, Staph aureus and H. Influenzae type a 

Dr. Anne Blaschke's lab is studying the comparative genomics of these organisms to look for specific genetic factors associated with particular disease phenotypes. Future work will include cell culture and animal models of bacterial infection.

Pneumonia

Dr. Krow Ampofo was the principal investigator of the CDC EPIC study (Etiology of Pneumonia in the Community). This is the largest and most detailed study of community acquired pneumonia to date. EPIC has generated many substudies. They include use of next generation sequencing to detect additional and novel pathogens, comparative efficacy of strategies to manage complicated pneumonia, multiplex PCR to diagnose the etiology of empyema, and predictors of bacterial infection including bacterial colonization density and procalcitonin.