A photo of Mary Staat.

Mary Allen Staat, MD, MPH

  • Director, International Adoption Center
  • Professor, UC Department of Pediatrics



I specialize in infectious diseases, international adoption and travel medicine. As a physician, I have a desire to help prevent, treat and cure infections in children. Dr. Arthur Frank, a preventive medicine specialist, inspired me to consider public health as a career. Drs. Larry Pickering and Ralph Feigin encouraged me to provide clinical care and pursue research in pediatrics.

My research involves the epidemiology of contagions in children. For instance, I am very interested in learning when children are infected with certain pathogens, how the infection impacts them, and how their immune system responds to it. To uncover answers to our questions, we perform surveillance and cohort studies in mothers and babies.

Our research goals are to better understand and identify the immune response to the flu in babies who were exposed to influenza for the first time either from a natural infection or from the flu vaccine. By understanding this response, we hope to develop a universal influenza vaccine.

I thought we only had part of the story with certain pathogens and that we only knew the typical presentation or researched the children with the most relentless symptoms. I was curious to answer these questions: Why do some children get an infection and have mild symptoms, while others may die from that same infection? Why do some children have a good response to a vaccine and others do not? I wanted to get the whole story via my research studies.

My colleagues and I are thankful for families who participate in our studies and help us learn how to prevent infections in the future. We are truly passionate about the research we are pursuing.

Our team has been awarded a large Cooperative Agreement grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to assess influenza in a maternal infant cohort in Cincinnati and Mexico City. Also, I was named Kulkarni Endowed Chair of Infectious Diseases at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center.

My research has been published in various respected journals, including American Journal of Infection Control, Clinical Infectious Diseases, Pediatrics International, and Pediatric Blood and Cancer.

MD: University of Kentucky, Lexington, Ky., 1986.

MPH: Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Md., 1991.

Residency: Pediatrics, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas, 1986-1989; Preventive Medicine, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Md., 1990-1994.

Fellowship: Infectious Diseases, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas, 1989-1990; Epidemiology, National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Rockville, Md., 1990-1993.

Certification: Pediatrics, 1989; Preventive Medicine, 1996; Pediatric Infectious Diseases, 1999.


Helicobacter pylori; rotavirus epidemiology; travel medicine; infectious diseases of international adoptees

Services and Specialties

Infectious Diseases, International Adoption


Epidemiology of enteric infections; surveillance of infectious diseases

Research Areas

Infectious Diseases

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Community-Onset Bacterial Coinfection in Children Critically Ill With Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 Infection. Moffitt, KL; Nakamura, MM; Young, CC; Newhams, MM; Halasa, NB; Reed, JN; Fitzgerald, JC; Spinella, PC; Soma, VL; Walker, TC; et al. Open Forum Infectious Diseases. 2023; 10.

Surveillance for multisystem inflammatory syndrome in U.S. children aged 5-11 years who received Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine, November 2021-March 2022. Cortese, MM; Taylor, AW; Akinbami, LJ; Thames-Allen, A; Yousaf, AR; Campbell, AP; Maloney, SA; Harrington, T; Anyalechi, EG; Munshi, D; et al. Journal of Infectious Diseases. 2023.

Factors Associated With COVID-19 Non-vaccination in Adolescents Hospitalized Without COVID-19. Sahni, LC; Price, AM; Olson, SM; Newhams, MM; Pannaraj, PS; Maddux, AB; Halasa, NB; Bline, KE; Cameron, MA; Schwartz, SP; et al. Journal of the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society. 2023; 12:29-35.

Sustained Within-season Vaccine Effectiveness Against Influenza-associated Hospitalization in Children: Evidence From the New Vaccine Surveillance Network, 2015-2016 Through 2019-2020. Sahni, LC; Naioti, EA; Olson, SM; Campbell, AP; Michaels, MG; Williams, JV; Staat, MA; Schlaudecker, EP; McNeal, MM; Halasa, NB; et al. Clinical Infectious Diseases. 2023; 76:e1031-e1039.

BNT162b2 mRNA Vaccination Against Coronavirus Disease 2019 is Associated With a Decreased Likelihood of Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children Aged 5-18 Years-United States, July 2021 - April 2022. Zambrano, LD; Newhams, MM; Olson, SM; Halasa, NB; Price, AM; Orzel, AO; Young, CC; Boom, JA; Sahni, LC; Maddux, AB; et al. Clinical Infectious Diseases. 2023; 76:e90-e100.

Circulation of Rhinoviruses and/or Enteroviruses in Pediatric Patients With Acute Respiratory Illness Before and During the COVID-19 Pandemic in the US. Rankin, DA; Spieker, AJ; Perez, A; Stahl, AL; Rahman, HK; Stewart, LS; Schuster, JE; Lively, JY; Haddadin, Z; Probst, V; et al. JAMA Network Open. 2023; 6.

Gut Microbiome Composition and Metabolic Capacity Differ by FUT2 Secretor Status in Exclusively Breastfed Infants. Thorman, AW; Adkins, G; Conrey, SC; Burrell, AR; Yu, Y; White, B; Burke, R; Haslam, D; Payne, DC; Staat, MA; et al. Nutrients. 2023; 15.

4 Infectious Diseases in Refugee and Internationally Adopted Children. Staat, MA; Barnett, ED. Principles and Practice of Pediatric Infectious Diseases. 2023.

Maternal Vaccination and Risk of Hospitalization for Covid-19 Among Infants. Halasa, NB; Olson, SM; Staat, MA; Newhams, MM; Price, AM; Pannaraj, PS; Boom, JA; Sahni, LC; Chiotos, K; Cameron, MA; et al. Obstetrical and Gynecological Survey. 2023; 78:3-5.

2196. Frequencies of Adenovirus Types in U.S. Children with Acute Respiratory Illness, 2016–2019. Probst, V; Stopczynski, T; Amarin, JZ; Spieker, AJ; Rahman, HK; Stewart, LS; Selvarangan, R; Schuster, JE; Michaels, MG; Williams, J; et al. Open Forum Infectious Diseases. 2022; 9.

From the Blog

Vaccine ‘Highly Effective’ in Preventing Adolescent COVID-19 Hospitalization
Infectious Diseases and Vaccines

Vaccine ‘Highly Effective’ in Preventing Adolescent COVID-19 Hospitalization

Mary Allen Staat, MD, MPH10/21/2021

$30M Grant Fuels Hunt for Universal Flu Vaccine
Infectious Diseases and Vaccines

$30M Grant Fuels Hunt for Universal Flu Vaccine

Mary Allen Staat, MD, MPH7/3/2019

The PREVAIL Cincinnati Birth Cohort: Breastfeeding and Sleep Analysis

The PREVAIL Cincinnati Birth Cohort: Breastfeeding and Sleep Analysis

Mary Allen Staat, MD, MPH7/3/2019

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