Author Archives: Francesc Xavier Abad
In the last post, a few days ago, we commented that H5N8 avian flu had reached the other side of the Pyrenees and that soon it would jump towards the Peninsula. A few days ago the detection of H5N8 strain was reported in two common geese (Anser anser) found dead in the lagoon of La Nava de Fuentes, in Palencia (Castilla y León). This detection was possible thanks to what we call passive epidemiological surveillance.
A few months ago, in September 2016, the United Nations agency for food and agriculture (FAO) warned of the spread of a highly pathogenic avian influenza virus, HPAI H5N8 on Lake Ubsu-Nur, in Russia. A few weeks later the virus had reached India and Europe. This would be the fourth wave of intercontinental propagation of an HPAI virus since 2005; The last one was 2014/2015. It is assumed that the main “guilt” would lie in the movements of migratory birds.
A little over a month ago the“The European Union summary report on trends and sources of zoonoses, zoonotic agents and food-borne outbreaks in 2015” was issued, a joint initiative of the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) and the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC).
A month ago,”curious” news jumped. The Institute Pasteur Korea (IPK), in the person of one of its researchers, skipped all regulations on biological material transportation in a movement of MERS Coronavirus samples, Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus, and worse … it was not properly informed, nor did the Institute Pasteur in Paris.
The text that follows contains my opening speech as President of the Spanish Association of Biosafety at the welcome session of the 3rd congress of the association, AEBioS held in Bilbao the past October 17th and 18th. That same day, several congress’ attendees told me they were pleased with the talk because it was an original and well engaged approach. Here’s a translated (from spanish) transcription of the speech:
The latest edition of the Postgraduate Course in Biosafety and Biocontainment strategies, which took place on the campus of the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB), between October the 3th and 7th has included the collaboration, as in previous editions, of IRTA-CReSA staff. This fifth edition definitely consolidates this “veteran” graduate course in biosafety and biocontainment as a benchmark for training in biosafety and biocontainment in Spain, as it has been fully booked and has left some applicants on the waiting list for the next edition. It is a symptom of the growing interest that these issues have among students, or those people simply interested in the various life sciences fields.
The interest of society towards certain subjects fluctuates up and down, until the matter eventually leaves the scene. Even though Crimean-Congo news no longer appear on newspapers we will write a second post, and maybe last, for now, dedicated to this virus. A few ideas will be reviewed regarding the epidemiology, the potential distribution of the Crimean Congo hemorrhagic fever virus (CCHFV onwards) in Spain and Catalonia, also about its pathogenesis and how it affects our health systems. A patchwork-post, if you like, not one with a linear style but brushstrokes to outline the global painting…or al least to give a quick hand of paint to the wall.
Viral comments (26): Crimean-Congo virus infects in Spain. It’s not a newcomer, though, since it arrived a few years ago.
Yesterday we ate lunch with the news of the confirmation of the first two cases in Western Europe (one of them, mortal) of Crimea Congo hemorrhagic fever virus infection (CCHF onwards). It was the chronicle of story foretold. We’ll discuss more about this in a future post, because the genome of the virus had been detected from ticks in a farm in Extremadura, in the years 2010-11.