Helen Chu
Associate Professor
Department of Medicine, Allergy & Infectious Diseases
Adjunct Associate Professor
Department of Epidemiology
Adjunct Associate Professor
Department of Global Health
Attending Physician, Infectious Diseases
Sites of Practice: 
Harborview Medical Center

Faculty Information


Dr. Chu’s research is focused on preventive interventions against influenza, RSV and emerging respiratory viruses, such as SARS-CoV-2. Dr. Chu conducts clinical-translational research on large-scale community-based studies of respiratory viruses, with a focus on vaccines, antivirals, and diagnostics. She is also interested in defining clinical and immune correlates of protection against respiratory viruses and describing mechanisms of maternal-fetal immunity against respiratory viruses. 

Dr. Chu is a Multiple Principal Investigator of the Seattle Flu Study, which first identified COVID-19 community transmission in the United States, Co-Investigator on the University of Washington Vaccine Trials and Evaluation Unit (VTEU), and Site Principal Investigator for the ACTT-1 trial, which evaluated Remdesivir for the treatment of COVID-19.  Over the last four months, Dr. Chu’s lab has enrolled a prospective observational cohort of 300 COVID-19 inpatients and outpatients to study immune responses over time.

Her previous work includes describing transmission patterns of RSV, rhinovirus, and human metapneumovirus, the epidemiology and adverse birth outcomes associated with respiratory viral pneumonia in pregnant women, and the kinetics of transplacental RSV antibody transfer and decay in infants. Dr. Chu has also performed clinical trials of vaccine candidates in both domestic and international sites, including Nepal and Bangladesh.

Education & Training: 
Cornell University, Oxford University
Duke University
Durham, NC
Intern, Department of Medicine
Harvard Medical School
Boston, MA
Resident, Department of Medicine
Harvard University
Boston, MA
Fellow, Division of Allergy & Infectious Diseases
University of Washington
Seattle, WA
MPH, Immunology
University of Washington
Seattle, WA
American Society of Clinical Investigation Young Physician Scientist Award
Infectious Disease Society of America Young Investigator Award in Vaccine Development
University of Washington Chair of Medicine Scholars Award
Macrae Foundation Respiratory Virus Symposium Early Investigator Award
Thrasher Early Career Award
Washingtonian of the Year, Washington State Leadership Board
Researcher of the Year, Health Care Leadership Awards
Spotlight Award, Seattle National Organization for Women
(206) 685-8702
Mailing Address: 

Box 358061   

UW Medicine SLU
Chu Lab Room E630
750 Republican St.
Seattle WA, 98109


Research & Clinical Interests
Research Interests: 

-Epidemiology of respiratory viruses
-Defining clinical and immune correlates of protection against respiratory viruses
-Molecular characterization of respiratory viruses in diverse settings
-Investigating large-scale community transmission patterns of respiratory viruses
-Describing mechanisms of maternal-fetal immunity against respiratory viruses
-Vaccine and antiviral development

Clinical Interests: 

-General infectious diseases
-Viral respiratory infectious diseases
-Internal Medicine



Chu HY, Englund JA, Starita LM, Famulare M, Brandstetter E, Nickerson DA, Rieder MJ, Adler A, Lacombe K, Kim AE, Graham C, Logue J, Wolf CR, Heimonen J, McCulloch DJ, Han PD, Sibley TR, Lee J, Ilcisin M, Fay K, Burstein R, Martin B, Lockwood CM, Thompson M, Lutz B, Jackson M, Hughes JP, Boeckh M, Shendure J, Bedford T. Early Detection of Covid-19 through a Citywide Pandemic Surveillance Platform. N Engl J Med. 2020 May 1; PubMed PMID: 32356944; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC7206929.

Seydoux E, Homad LJ, MacCamy AJ, Parks KR, Hurlburt NK, Jennewein MF, Akins NR, Stuart AB, Wan YH, Feng J, Whaley RE, Singh S, Boeckh M, Cohen KW, McElrath MJ, Englund JA, Chu HY, Pancera M, McGuire AT, Stamatatos L. Analysis of a SARS-CoV-2-Infected Individual Reveals Development of Potent Neutralizing Antibodies with Limited Somatic Mutation. Immunity. 2020 Jul 14;53(1):98-105.e5. doi: 10.1016/j.immuni.2020.06.001. Epub 2020 Jun 8. PMID: 32561270; PMCID: PMC7276322.

Atyeo, C, Fischinger S, Zohar T, Slein M, Burke J, Loos C, McCulloch DJ, Newman KL, Wolf C, Shuey K, Ryan E, Charles R, Schimdt A, Suscovich TJ, Linde C, Chen B, Lauffenburger D, Chu HY*, Alter G*, Distinct serological signatures track with SARS-CoV-2 outcome, Immunity, In Press
*Co-senior author