Safe solutions for research into global threats by infectious diseases

6 April 2018 - 09:00 to 13:30
Lecture Hall (Educational Center) Erasmus MC, Rotterdam, The Netherlands

One century ago, the pandemic Spanish Flu took millions of human lives. Since then, vaccines were developed and resulted in the eradication of smallpox and the mitigation of a number of other diseases such as polio. Antibiotics were discovered starting 1928 (penicillin).

However, infectious diseases continue to present public health challenges, both from human and animal reservoirs, requiring a One Health approach. Outbreaks and emerging diseases spread more easily by increased international travel, urbanization, and climate change.

Research on how infectious agents cause disease and interact with the host organism is indispensible to provide means for outbreak prevention and control, such as diagnostics, vaccines and treatments. Furthermore, the properties of infectious agents may change over time including host spectrum and the evasion of therapy (drug resistance). The in-depth study of those phenomena will help to predict, prevent and control emerging diseases. The laboratory is designed to meet and exceed international guidelines and standards regarding biosafety and biosecurity. It has laboratories to conduct several studies in parallel, thus providing unique opportunities for intensified collaborations between research groups and other partners for the advancement of infectious diseases prevention and control. For this, it was placed on the NWO national roadmap for large research infrastructures.

The program features lectures of international academic authorities in the field of infectious diseases prevention and control.