Author Archives: Francesc Xavier Abad

Viral comments (31): H5N8, if I were you I would rush to buy some “foie gras” right now

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.

Viral comments (30): Viral safety, zoonoses and food, Europe, 2015

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).

Comentaris viruslents (29): MERS Coronavirus, nothing to declare? A bad idea

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.

Viral comments (28): Bio-risk management and its social derivatives

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:

IRTA-CReSA collaborates with the Course on Biosafety and Biocontainment strategies, from the UAB

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.

Viral comments (27): Crimean-Congo, the wave passed… for now.

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.

Viral Comments (25): Enterovirus, here comes the surprise.

This post has been published in Catalan and Spanish only, please accept our apologies.