Author Archives: Francesc Xavier Abad

Viral comments (45): Ebola and Congo, almost a perfect storm

This is the fifth (false) month of a new outbreak of Ebola in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), a country that has already experienced ten epidemics for this virus throughout its history. In fact, the virus was discovered there in 1976. And it is not being given excessive importance, assuming it will be solved as precedents. And maybe yes, but…

Viral comments (44): Postgraduate course in Biosecurity, the path is made by walking

Last week finished the postgraduate course BIOSAFETY AND BIOCONTAINMENT STRATEGIES, taught in Spanish, coordinated academically by Dr. Antonio Villaverde and organized by the Faculty of Biociences and Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, with the support of the UAB’s Environment Office and of the Spanish Biosafety Association (AEBioS).

Viral comments (43): Endemic arboviral infections. Don’t got it, don’t got it, don’t got it…. Denguit!

We already have it here … perhaps it only comes to visit, or perhaps one should say that it returns to visit … we do not know if it’s for a few days or for many years.

Viral comments (42): AEBioS 2018-A very diverse congress

Last week, from 3th to 5th of October, AEBioS, the Spanish Biosecurity Association held its 4th congress, this time in Salamanca.

Viral comments (41): AEBioS 2018, congress of biosafety in Salamanca

At the end of next week, from 3 to 5 of October, AEBioS, the Spanish Association of Biosafety will hold its 4th congress, this time in Salamanca. For more information you can access its website.  

Viral Comments (40): Biosafety through risk assessments; more flexibility, for sure, but more dispersion?

The release of the new Laboratory Biosafety Manual of the World Health Organization (WHO) is imminent. The last edition dates from 2004 and has become one of the reference texts although it does not provide technical information but rather gives advice and organizes how to approach the world of Biosafety through the classification of microorganisms according to their risks and the corresponding levels of Biosafety of the facilities and their requirements.

Viral comments (39): Infectious Diseases One Health Master at CReSA; a path that starts with a lot of road to walk.

Emerging and re-emerging diseases have fuelled the construction and operation of high number of high biocontainment facilities (or Biosafety level 3) and maximum biocontainment (Biosafety level 4) facilities. Only those centres can manipulate and propagate hazardous and easily transmissible pathogens, even lethal ones, safely. This implies that professionals dedicated to issues of emerging or re-emerging infectious diseases, and in particular also zoonotic diseases, should have not only theoretical knowledge, but also practical, of the facilities in which they will potentially work or that they should manage in the future.

Viral comments (38): Biosafety will be sustainable and proportionate or it will not prevail

For almost three decades (the first edition of LBM, Laboratory Biosafety Manual of the World Health Organization, WHO, is from 1983) Biosafety has been implanted, stumbling in some cases, in different countries of different continents. Biosafety grouped and groups together a set of techniques and procedures that seek to control exposure to pathogens, protecting the laboratorial workforce, but also the community that surrounds them, in the face of involuntary or accidental releases.

Viral comments (37): A WHO action plan not to end up between a rock and a hard place

Since 2015, the World Health Organization (WHO) has been developing and polishing a “tool” (risk assessment committees of experts based on the available information) to try to identify those diseases that represent (or will represent) a risk to public health due to its epidemic potential and against which there are no countermeasures or these are considered insufficient.

Viral comments (36): WHO consultative meeting on high/maximum containment laboratories networking

Laboratories of high biocontainment (BSL3) and maximum biocontainment (BSL4) worldwide represent the highest levels of biological containment, offering great protection for the user, the sample and the environment.