Georgia Southern immunology expert to give presentation, hold Q&A on Coronavirus vaccines for ‘Science on Tap’ series to build vaccine confidence
Georgia Southern University professor of biology and immunology expert, Traci Ness, Ph.D., will host a presentation and virtual Q&A session titled, “COVID Vaccines Unmasked: Questions and Answers from an Immunologist,” on the coronavirus vaccines. The virtual event is part of the College of Science and Mathematics “Science on Tap” series and is free and open to the public.
Ness will address three of the largest concerns with the vaccines: the speed the vaccines were developed, their effectiveness and safety, and the steps they went through for approval.
“Every student at Georgia Southern, including all of our dual enrolled high school students, is eligible for vaccination,” Ness said. “There has been so much misinformation about the coronavirus and COVID-19 vaccines shared in social media. It is important that our students and the community make informed decisions based on reliable sources.”
Ness’ expertise in immunology stems from her time spent doing a research thesis on immunology of marine mammals while an undergraduate. She also focused her doctoral research on how viruses related to smallpox change the immune response to avoid getting killed by hosts. She also completed a postdoctoral research position in the Department of Pathology at the University of Michigan where she studied immune responses in animal models of disease. She currently teaches courses in immunology, virology and infectious diseases.
Ness said learning about how vaccines work is the only way people can make informed decisions about their well-being.
“The purpose of this talk is to build vaccine confidence and dispel some of the misinformation and refer students and other audience members to credible resources in which to make educated decisions about vaccination,” Ness said. “The only way to stop the pandemic and begin to return to normal, albeit a different normal, is to control the spread of the coronavirus. The only hope of a more lasting effect is to limit the number of individuals that can be infected by the virus and that can only be accomplished by vaccination.”
The virtual talk will be held on Zoom on April 22 at 6 p.m. To participate, visit https://georgiasouthern.zoom.us/j/88939119220.