St. Jude has been distinguished as a Center of Excellence for Influenza Research by the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) since 2007.

This national-level distinction, renewed with a third seven-year award in 2021, reflects our expertise and robust ongoing research efforts in influenza.

Program goals

Program goals

The CEIRR network was developed to provide the information and public health tools needed to control the impact of epidemic influenza and minimize the threat of pandemic influenza. 

The St. Jude CEIRR program integrates comprehensive global surveillance with fundamental research. Our research provides critical insight into the mechanisms leading to the emergence of flu pandemics from animal viruses.

Who we are

Who we are

The multidisciplinary St. Jude CEIRR team includes talented investigators, collaborators and trainees from St. Jude and other top institutions around the world. 

What we do

Many different influenza viruses circulate in the world’s animal populations. These viruses sometimes cross to humans, causing limited numbers of infections. Less often, these viruses mutate into forms that are able to spread between humans, causing global pandemics. 

The CEIRR program aims to unravel critical mysteries in the emergence and spread of influenza viruses. How do new viruses arise? What mutations enable them to spread among the human population and cause a pandemic? What are the options for controlling them?

An international hub for outstanding research

Specific areas of focus for the St. Jude CEIRR include: 

  • Understanding the threat to humans from flu viruses of animals
  • Identifying signatures of the human immune response to flu
  • Defining the impact of flu in high-risk populations
  • Uncovering how influenza transmits from animals to humans and between people
  • Improving treatments and vaccines

On alert for emerging pandemics

To help answer these critical research questions, we conduct ongoing surveillance of influenza viruses in their natural hosts and the people in contact with the animals. St. Jude leads an international team of investigators focused on identifying these animal flu viruses before they impact human health.

Central to our program is the training and support of young investigators. Along with the data generated through our activities, these talented individuals will support and advance the ongoing pandemic preparedness activities of the U.S. government for years to come.

emerging pandemics

Stories of success

Learn more about how our CEIRR program is advancing global influenza research and surveillance.

St. Jude is also a World Health Organization Collaborating Center for Influenza.