Dr. Manish Sadarangani began the role of VEC director in 2016. Dr. Sadarangani’s joined the VEC from The Children’s Hospital in Oxford, UK, where he was a Clinical Lecturer and Consultant in Pediatric Infectious Diseases and Immunology. Dr. Sadarangani plans to build a research program that incorporates laboratory, clinical and population-based studies.  His work will include studying the relationships between bowel bacteria and responses to infant vaccines, as increasing evidence points to “good germs” being able to strengthen immunity. The ultimate goal of his research is to inform evidence-based policy to lower the burden of childhood infectious diseases through vaccination.


DS HeadshotDr. David Scheifele is one of the original founders of the VEC and was the VEC Director from 1988-2016. In 2012 he was appointed as an Officer of the Order of Canada in recognition of his outstanding contributions to the prevention of infections in children. Dr. Scheifele is a pediatric infectious disease specialist and his many interests include the prevention of influenza, haemophilus influenza type b infections that cause meningitis, pneumococcal infections and vaccine safety.


jbDr. Julie Bettinger is an Associate Professor at the VEC in the Department of Pediatrics at the University of British Columbia and a Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research Scholar. Her research interests include vaccine safety and vaccine preventable diseases as well as attitudes and beliefs around immunization uptake and use. She is the epidemiologist for the Canadian Immunization Monitoring Program, Active (IMPACT), an active surveillance network for vaccine preventable diseases and vaccine adverse events in 12 tertiary care pediatric hospitals across Canada and the lead investigator for PCIRN’s National Ambulatory Network


Dr. Tobias Kollmann joined the VEC in 2006.  As a pediatric infectious disease specialist his main research interest is to learn how the newborn’s immune system works to prevent infections during this vulnerable time period.  His goal is to find ways to improve the immune response that baby’s have to vaccines to provide them with better protection.


sorenDr. Soren Gantt joined the VEC in 2012. He is a Senior Associate Clinician Scientist at the VEC and an Associate Professor at the University of British Columbia. His current research focus includes Herpesvirus infection (HHV), HIV, cancer, antiviral, and immune response. His goals are to address fundamental questions about how to prevent and treat HHV-related diseases, including a focus on HHV infections early in life and in utero.


Dr. Laura Sauvé joined the VEC in 2007. She is a pediatric infectious disease specialist who has a special interest in Pediatric HIV. Her main research interests include vaccine preventable disease, global child health and pediatric HIV. She is the BC site investigator for the Immunization Monitoring Program, Active, a national surveillance system for vaccine preventable diseases and vaccine adverse events in 12 pediatric tertiary care centers across Canada. She also is the co-primary investigator of the Canadian Perinatal HIV Surveillance Program, which studies vertical transmission of HIV across Canada.

Research Fellows and Students

2016-devon-greysonDr. Devon Greyson, PhD (UBC), MLIS (UBC), BA (Hons., Oberlin), is a postdoctoral researcher at VEC since 2015. A social scientist, Dr. Greyson studies the ways people use health information. Devon is investigating the ways parents make vaccination decisions, and the ways that media, health care providers, and public policy influence those decisions.


Dr. Clara Rubincam joined the VEC as a postdoctoral Research Fellow in 2015. Dr. Rubincam’s current project is about understanding the evolution of expectant and new parents’ beliefs and behaviors about pediatric vaccination in British Columbia.

May Ahmed is a MSc student at University of British Columbia joining the Vaccine Evaluation Center in early 2017.

Dr. Bahaa Abu Raya is a clinician-scientist and joined the VEC in 2015 as a pediatric infectious disease fellow. His research has been predominantly in the field of immunization in pregnancy to protect the newborn, focusing on Pertussis. He is also a member of the “Immunization Monitoring Program Active” (IMPACT) pertussis working group and the “Progressing Immunization in Pregnancy Evaluation and Research” (PIPER) group.​ Dr. Abu Raya is the recipient of the prestigious International Doctoral Fellowship Award from the University of British Columbia.​

Emily Gemmell holds a BSc in Biology (UBC) and is pursuing a Master of Public Health at UBC. She has worked at the Vaccine Evaluation Center since 2016 in qualitative research on immunization information and new mothers.

Dr. Robine Donken, is a postdoctoral fellow with the VEC since 2017. Robine is an epidemiologist and obtained her PhD at the VU University in Amsterdam in collaboration with the Dutch National Institute for Public Health and the Environment. Her focus of research is on the most effective dosing schedule for HPV vaccination with regard to effectiveness and immunogenicity.

Support Staff

The investigators of the VEC are supported by an experienced well trained pool of staff that have extensive experience in program management, clinical field studies, data management and laboratory testing.