Skip to Main Content

Virginia Pitzer, ScD

Associate Professor of Epidemiology (Microbial Diseases); Affiliated Faculty, Yale Institute for Global Health

Contact Information

Virginia Pitzer, ScD

Office Location



Virginia Pitzer, joined the Yale School of Public Health as an assistant professor in 2012. She earned her Sc.D. in Epidemiology from the Harvard School of Public Health in 2007, and was a postdoctoral research fellow at Princeton (Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology) and a postdoctoral fellow in the Research and Policy for Infectious Disease Dynamics (RAPIDD) program at the Fogarty International Center of the National Institutes of Health prior to coming to Yale.

Pitzer’s work focuses on mathematical modeling of the transmission dynamics of imperfectly immunizing infections and how interventions such as vaccination, improved treatment of cases, and improvements in sanitation affect disease transmission at the population level. Her primary research is in rotavirus, (one of the leading causes of severe diarrhea in children in developed and developing countries) for which two new vaccines have been recently introduced. She is also interested in the spatiotemporal dynamics of respiratory syncytial virus and evaluating control options for typhoid fever. Her paper Demographic Variability, Vaccination, and the Spatiotemporal Dynamics of Rotavirus Epidemics appeared in Science magazine in 2009.

Education & Training

  • ScD
    Harvard School of Public Health (2007)


  • Rotavirus vaccine impact in developing countries
    Bangladesh; Ghana; Malawi (2015-2019)
    We are using a combination of statistical and mathematical modeling to predict the impact of rotavirus vaccination in developing countries, then validating our predictions against the observed impact of vaccination in Malawi and Ghana.
  • Rotavirus vaccine impact in Belgium
    Belgium 2013
    In collaboration with researchers in Belgium, we are using mathematical models to understand the impact of vaccination on the incidence and distribution of genotypes causing rotavirus gastroenteritis.
  • Typhoid fever dynamics and potential impact of vaccination
    India; Malawi; Nepal; Vietnam 2012
    We are using mathematical models to better understand epidemiological patterns in the incidence of typhoid fever, predict the potential impact of vaccination, and identify key questions for future field and laboratory studies.

Departments & Organizations