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Pr. Vincent Deubel gave lecture on Avian Flu at Xinmin Science Café

Date:28-09-2009   |   【Print】 【close

  On Mar. 19, Prof. Vincent Deubel, Director General of Institut Pasteur of Shanghai was invited to give a lecture on Avian Flu at Xinmin Science Café, a nice place for science knowledge and spirit popularization.  

  “This is a virus”. Prof. Deubel introduced his first slide in fluent Chinese. In his following slides, Prof. Deubel gave audience a panorama of avian flu: the structure of a virus, mechanisms of genetic variations of viruses, circulation of avian influenza in birds, transmission of avian influenza to humans, why some people were infected with avian flu, and some people not, how to prevent avian flu infection.  

  Prof. Deubel said that we can not stop or alter bird migration and stop people eating poultry, but we can keep domestic birds enclosed especially in live bird markets and strictly follow the biosecurity rules on poultry farms. He pointed out that a pandemic plan was a globally and nationally action. We can avoid the genesis of a pandemic influenza virus by monitoring sporadic and zoonotic cases in wild and domestic birds and in pigs, by rapid intervention by personal protective equipments and anti-virals when applicable. We should be working on delaying the onset of a pandemic or its start from imported cases, so as to limit the impact of the pandemic. The control of a pandemic is a difficult job and it requires never ending efforts. At the end of his presentation, Prof. Deubel gave several suggestions to audience: hygiene behaviors and eating well cooked meats are very effective methods on personal prevention of influenza.  

  After his presentation, Prof. Deubel got a number of questions from audience. “Is it possible to change a high pathogenic virus to a low pathogenic virus by gene technology”? “Can we predict a virus as we do for weather”? “Shall the infection pass onto pets”? “Is it dangerous to eat duck blood soup”? etc. The questions got answers with explanations from Prof. Deubel.  

  Dr. Yu Tao, Vice Chairman of the Shanghai Association for Science and Technology chaired the conference. Dr. Anna Du from Sanofi-Pasteur was presenting and gave an introduction on influenza vaccines against seasonal flu and (pre)pandemic avian flu.