Skip to main content

Wilbur H. Chen, MD, MS

Frank M. Calia, MD Endowed Professor

Academic Title:


Primary Appointment:


Administrative Title:

Interim Chief of the Geographic Medicine Division

Additional Title:

Frank M. Calia, M.D. Endowed Professor


HSF1, 480

Phone (Primary):

(410) 706-5328


(410) 706-6205

Education and Training

Boston University, B.A., Biology, 1992

Howard University College of Medicine, M.D., 1999

Residency, Johns Hopkins University Bayview Medical Center, Internal Medicine, 1999-2002

Fellowship, University of Maryland Medical Center, Infectious Diseases, 2002-2004

Fellowship, University of Maryland Center for Vaccine Development, National Research Service Award in Vaccinology, 2004-2006

University of Maryland, M.S., Clinical Research, 2008


Dr. Chen is an adult infectious disease physician-scientist with a specific interest in developing vaccines. He is Chief of the Adult Clinical Studies section within the Center for Vaccine Development and Global Health and Director of the UMB Travel Medicine Practice. His research is concentrated on two broad areas of global health. First, he is devoted to developing vaccines for enteric pathogens, infectious diseases chiefly of resource poor and economically disadvantaged countries and populations. Second, he is interested in improved vaccines for the elderly, a rapidly growing segment of the global population which is susceptible to many infections and a special population that generally responds poorly to vaccination.

Dr. Chen is active investigator within the NIAID-supported Vaccine and Treatment Evaluation Unit (VTEU), composed of 10 academic centers throughout the U.S., and was the principal investigator of the NIAID-supported Food and Waterborne Diseases Integrated Research Network Clinical Research Unit (FWD IRN CRU). He has been a PI on vaccine trials for: influenza viruses (Seasonal, Pandemic 2009 H1N1, Avian H5N1, and Avian H7N9 influenza), agents of bioterror (Tularemia, Smallpox, and Staphylococcal enterotoxin B), and enteric pathogens (typhoid, cholera and enterotoxigenic E. coli). He also develops and conducts human experimental challenge studies, closely monitored infections with well-characterized pathogens, to gain new insights into pathogenesis, the immune response, or early efficacy of candidate vaccines or therapeutics.  He holds FDA INDs for wild-type V. cholerae and enterotoxigenic E. coli (ETEC) challenges. With funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Dr. Chen is working with a Shigella challenge model and he worked on the development of a challenge model for Cryptosporidium hominis; with funding from PATH (an international nonprofit organization, Program for Appropriate Technology in Health) he worked on a challenge model for heat-stable enterotoxin (ST)-only expressing ETEC.

Dr. Chen serves on a number advisory capacities, including as voting member of the CDC's Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices and core member of NIAID's Data and Safety Monitoring Board. 

Research/Clinical Keywords

Infectious diseases, vaccinology, clinical trials, enteric pathogens, ETEC, influenza, meningitis, shigella, bioterrorism, human challenge model, and VTEU.

Highlighted Publications

Hoft DF, Lottenbach K, Goll JB, Hill H, Winokur PL, Patel SM, Brady RC, Chen WH, Edwards K, Creech CB, Frey SE, Blevins TP, Salomon R, Belshe RB. Priming vaccination with H5 hemagglutinin antigen significantly increases T cell responses induced by a heterologous H5 booster vaccination. J Infect Dis. 2016; 2h14(7):1020-1029.

Feldstein LR, Matrajt L, Halloran ME, Keitel WA, Longini IM; member of H5N1 Vaccine Working Group. Extrapolating theoretical efficacy of inactivated influenza A/H5N1 virus vaccine from human immunogenicity studies. Vaccine 2016; 34:3796-802.

Tapia MD, Sow SO, Tamoura B, Teguete I, Pasetti MF, Kodio M, Onwuchekwa U, Tennant SM, Blackwelder WC, Coulibaly F, Traore A, Keita AM, Haidara FC, Diallo F, Doumbia M, Sanogo D, EdMatt E, Schluterman NH, Buchwalkd A, Kotloff KL, Chen WH, Orenstein EW, Orenstein LAV, Villanueva J, Bresee J, Treanor J, Levine MM. Maternal immunisation with trivalent inactivated influenza vaccine for prevention of influenza in infants in Mali: A prospective, active-controlled, observer-blind, randomised phase 4 trial. Lancet Infect Dis. 2016; 16(9):1026-1035.

Chen WH, Cohen MB, Kirkpatrick, BD, Brady RC, Galloway D, Gurwith M, Hall RH, Kessler RA, Lock M, Haney D, Lyon CE, Simon JK, Szabo F, Levine MM. Single-dose live oral cholera vaccine CVD 103-HgR protects against human experimental infection with vibrio cholerae O1 El Tor. Clin Infect Dis 2016; 62:1329-35.

Mbawuike I, Atmar RL, Patel SM, Corry D, Winokur PL, Brady RC, Chen WH, Edwards KM, Creech CB, Walter EB, Frey SE, Belshe RB, Goll JB, Hill H, Keitel WA. Cell mediated immune responses following revaccination with an Influenza A/H5N1 vaccine . Vaccine 2016; 34:547-554.

Additional Publication Citations

Chen WH, Jackson LA, Edwards KM, Keitel WA, Hill H, Noah DL, Creech CB, Patel SM, Mangal B, Kotloff KL. Persistence of antibody to influenza A/H5N1 vaccine virus: Impact of AS03 adjuvant. Clin Vacc Immunol. 2015; 23:73-77.

Omer SB, Richards JL, Madhi SA, Tapia MD, Steinhoff MC, Aqil AR, Wairagkar N; acknowledged as member of the BMGF Supported Maternal Influenza Immunization Trials Investigators Group. Three randomized trials of maternal influenza immunization in Mali, Nepal, and South Africa: Methods and expectations. Vaccine 2015; 33:3801-12.

Jackson SS and Chen WH. The evidence for CVD 103-HgR as an effective single dose oral cholera vaccine. Future Microbiology 2015; 10: 1271-81.

Frey SE, Wald A, Edupuganti S, Jackson LA, Stapleton J, El Sahly H, El-Kamary SS, Edwards K, Keyserling H, Winokur P, Keitel W, Hill H, Goll JB, Chaplin P, Belshe RB, the DMID 09-0002 MVA Study Group, Anderson EL, Graham IL, Johnston C, Mulligan M, Rouphael N, Atmar R, Patel S, Chen W, Kotloff K, Creech CB. Comparison of lyophilized versus liquid modified vaccinia Ankara (MVA) formulations and subcutaneous versus intradermal routes of administration in healthy vaccinia-naive subjects. Vaccine 2015; 33:5225-34.

Atmar RL, Bernstein DI, Lyon GM, Treanor JJ, Al-Ibrahim MS, Graham DY, Vinje J, Jiang X, Gregoricus N, Frenck RW, Moe CL, Chen WH, Ferreira J, Barrett J, Opekun AR, Estes MK, Borkowshi A, Baehner F, Goodwin R, Edmonds A, Mendelman PM. Serological correlates of protection against a GII.4 norovirus. Clin Vacc Immunol 2015; 22:923-9.

Winokur P, Patel S, Brady R, Chen WH, Edwards K, Creech CB, Frey S, Belshe R, Walter E, Bellamy A, Hill H. Safety and immunogenicity of a single low or high dose of clade 2 H5N1 inactivated influenza vaccine in adults previously primed with clade 1 H5N1 vaccine. J Infect Dis 2015; 212:525-30.

Nita-Lazar M, Banerjee A, Feng C, Amin MN, Frieman MB, Chen WH, Cross AS, Wang L-X, Vasta GR. Desialylation of airway epithelial cells during influenza virus infection enhances pneumococcal adhesion via galectin binding. Molec Immunol 2015; 65:1-16.

Sundararajan A, Sangster MY, Frey S, Atmar R, Chen WH, Ferreira J, Bargatze R, Mendelman PM, Treanor JJ, Topham DJ. Robust mucosal-homing antibody-secreting B cell responses induced by intramuscular administration of adjuvanted bivalent human norovirus-like particle vaccine. Vaccine 2015; 33:568-76.

Chen WH, Garza J, Choquette M, Hawkins J, Hoeper A, Bernstein DA, Hall R, Cohen MB. The safety and immunogenicity of escalating dosages of a single oral administration of Peru-15 pCTB, a candidate live, attenuated vaccine against enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli (ETEC) and Vibrio cholerae. Clin Vac Immunol 2015; 22:129-35.

Treanor JJ, Atmar RL, Frey SE, Gormley R, Chen WH, Ferreira J, Goodwin R, Borkowski A, Clemens R, Mendelman PM. A novel intramuscular bivalent norovirus VLP vaccine vandidate - reactogenicity, safety and immunogenicity in a phase I trial in healthy adults. J Infect Dis 2014; 210:1763-71.

Belshe RB, Frey SE, Graham IL, Anderson EL, Jackson LA, Spearman P, Edupuganti S, Mulligan MJ, Rouphael N, Winokur P, Dolor RJ, Woods CW, Walter EB, Chen WH, Turley C, Edwards KM, Creech CB, Hill H, Bellamy AR. Immunogenicity of avian influenza A/Anhui/01/2005 (H5N1) vaccine with MF59 adjuvant: a randomized clinical trial. JAMA 2014; 312:1420-28.

Callahan ST, Wolff M, Hill HR, and Edwards KM. Acknowledged as member of NIAID Vaccine and Treatment Evaluation Unit (VTEU) Pandemic H1N1 Vaccine Study Group. Impact of body mass index on immunogenicity of pandemic H1N1 vaccine in children and adults. J Infect Dis 2014; 210: 1270-74.

Bernstein DI, Atmar RL, Lyon GM, Treanor JJ, Jiang X, Vinje J, Gregoricus N, Chen WH, Frenck RW, Moe C, Al-Ibrahim MS, Barrett J, Ferreira J, Estes MK, Graham DY, Goodwin R, Borkowski A, Clemens R, Mendelman PM. Norovirus vaccine against experimental human GII.4 virus illness: a challenge study in healthy adults. J Infect Dis 2015; 211:870-8.

Stamatos NM, Zhang L, Jokilammi A, Finne J, Chen WH, El-Maarouf A, Cross A, and Hankey KG. Changes in polysialic acid expression on myeloid cells during differentiation and recruitment to sites of inflammation: role in phagocytosis. Glycobiology 2014; 24:864-79.

Chen WH, Jackson LA, Edwards KM, Keitel WA, Hill H, Noah DL, Creech CB, Patel SM, Mangal B, Kotloff KL. Safety, reactogenicity, and immunogenicity of inactivated monovalent influenza A/H5N1 virus vaccine administered with or without AS03 adjuvant. Open Forum Infect Dis 2014; 1(3):ofu091.

Chen WH, Greenberg RN, Pasetti MF, Livio S, Lock M, Gurwith M, and Levine MM. Safety and immunogenicity of single-dose live oral cholera vaccine strain CVD 103-HgR prepared from new master and working cell banks. Clin Vac Immunol 2014; 21:66-73.

El-Kamary SS, Cohen MB, Bourgeois AL, Van De Verg L, Bauers N, Reymann M, Pasetti MF, and Chen WH. Safety and immunogenicity of a single oral dose of recombinant double-mutant heat-labile toxin derived from enterotoxigenic escherichia coli. Clin Vac Immunol 2013; 20:1764-70.

Shirey KA, Lai W, Scott A, Lipsky M, Mistry P, Pletneva LM, Karp CL, McAlees J, Gioannini JL, Weiss J, Chen WH, Ernst R, Rossignol DP, Gusovsky F, Blanco JC, Vogel SN. The TLR4 antagonist, eritoran, protects mice from lethal influenza infection. Nature 2013; 497:498-502.

Ajao AO, Harris AD, Johnson JK, Roghmann M, Perencevich EN, Schweizer ML, Zhan M, Chen WH, Furuno JP. Association between methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus colonization and infection may not differ by age group. Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol 2013; 34:93-5.

Clinical Specialty Details

2004-present: Attending and Director (since April 2012), UMB Travelers' Health Clinic

Volunteers needed for clinical research: Please visit our clinical trials website for current clinical trials.

Awards and Affiliations

2022: bestowed Frank M. Calia, M.D. Endowed Professorship

2022: Mary Betty Stevens Award for Excellence in Clinical Investigation, American College of Physicians Maryland Chapter

2021: UMB Founders Week, Special Founders Week COVID-19 Pandemic Award

2016 and 2019: Department of Medicine, Clinical Publication of the Year

2012 and 2018: Department of Medicine, Division of Geographic Medicine, Faculty Teacher of the Year

2012, 2015-2021: Teaching Commendation

2017: elected Fellow, Infectious Disease Society of America

2016: elected Fellow, American College of Physicians

2010: Special Recognition Certificate for H1N1 research, NIH, NIAID, DMID

2010: Society of Leukocyte Biology (SLB)/IEIIS 2010 Junior Faculty Travel Award

2008: Passano Physician Scientist Award (The Passano Foundation, Inc.)

2004 and 2005: NIH National Research Service Award (T32)

2004 and 2005: ASM George McCracken Infectious Disease Fellow Travel Grant

1998: Bioethics Award, Howard University College of Medicine

1996 and 1997: Intramural Research Training Award, NIH, NIAID

Grants and Contracts

NIAID U01-AI43493, Initial clinical evaluation of attenuated Shigella flexneri 2a live vector expressing enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli antigens, strain CVD 1208S-122

NIAID U01-AI48054, Bacteriophage-based approach for managing Shigella infections

NIAID  U19-AI162130, Evaluating Modes of Influenza Transmission (EMIT-2) using Innovative Technologies and Designs in Controlled Environments

NIAID UM1-AI148689, Implementing Vaccine and Treatment Evaluation Unit (VTEU) Clinical Site Protocols

CDC 75D30120C08405, Applied Research to Address the COVID-19 Emerging Public Health Emergency

NIAID HHSN272201300022I, National Institues of Health (NIH)/National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) Vaccine and Treatment Evaluation Unit (VTEU)

The Wellcome Trust - Strategic Translation Award, Bilvalent Salmonella Typhimurium/Salmonella Enteritidis Non-Typhoidal Conjugate Vaccine




In the News