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Professor to Discuss Whooping Cough Research, Vaccine in Talk at Westmont

Steve Julio
Steve Julio

Steve Julio, associate professor of biology at Westmont College, will examine current research aimed at improving the whooping cough vaccine in a free, public lecture at 5:30 p.m. Thursday, April 9 at the University Club, 1332 Santa Barbara St.

No tickets are required; the limited seating is available on a first-come, first­served basis. For more information, please call 805.565.6051.

The lecture, “Toward a Better Vaccine for Whooping Cough,” is part of the Westmont Downtown Lecture Series, which is sponsored by the Westmont Foundation.

“Only a few decades ago, whooping cough was a medical after-thought,” Julio says. “However, a nationwide resurgence of the disease has called into question both the effectiveness of the current vaccine and vaccination habits.”

Julio, who studies the bacteria that causes whooping cough, will explore the importance of basic research for understanding how the bacteria causes infection and explain how his specific research program has direct implications for improving the whooping cough vaccine, which health-care professionals identify as a medical priority. He will also discuss the importance of immunization as a means to prevent the spread of communicable disease.

Julio, who has been teaching at Westmont since 2006, graduated from Westmont in 1992 and earned his doctorate at UC Santa Barbara in 2001.

Julio was also a research scientist for several years at Remedyne Corporation, a vaccine development company in Santa Barbara. He has had his work published by the Proceeding of the National Academy of Sciences, Infection and Immunity, Journal of Bacteriology, and Molecular and General Genetics.

— Scott Craig is the media relations manager for Westmont College.

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