The ESWI Respiratory Virus Summit, entitled Pandemic Preparedness: Where Science and Policy Meet, took place in Brussels and online on Tuesday 21 June 2022. Themes of the Summit included early warning systems, diagnostic platforms, pathogen discovery, mathematical models, clinical trial platforms, non-pharmaceutical intervention and treatment strategies, pharmaceutical intervention strategies, education, communication, and global cooperation.
Taking a One Health and Global Health approach, we have explored requirements for prediction, planning and execution aspects of pandemic preparedness.
We will inform all attendees via mail when our Report is available.
The Résidence Palace was Brussel’s first luxury apartment block. The sumptuous Art Deco building was designed by Swiss architect Michel Polak in the 1920s for the city’s bourgeoisie and aristocracy. The complex was conceived on a grand scale. It had chambermaids and butlers for the benefit of its occupants, as well as, among other things, its own restaurants, theatre, swimming pool, hairdressing salon, bank, post office, garages, grocers, florist’s shop, chocolate shop, newsagent, gymnastics hall and a terrace on the 11th floor. However, this success was to be short-lived. In 1941, the building was requisitioned by the occupying German forces. After the war, the complex could not be restored to its original use and it was bought by the Belgian State to house various government departments. In 2000, the federal government decided to set up an International Press Centre at the Résidence Palace, taking advantage of its prime location in the heart of the European quarter.
Today, the Résidence Palace – International Press Centre successfully combines authentic Brussels heritage with state-of-the-art technological infrastructure. It ensures a typically Belgian professionalism and high standard hospitality. It is also where the ESWI Headquarters are located.
Schuman Subway station: Lines 1 or 5, exit Rue de la Loi Schuman Bus Stop: Lines 12, 21, 22, 36, 60, 79 Schuman Train station Car Parking: Parking Loi, 85 Rue de la Loi - Parking Thon: 120 Rue de Trèves - 1040 Brussels
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Position: Director of the Center of Infection Medicine and Zoonosis Research and Guest-Professor at the University of Veterinary Medicine Hannover.
Research fields: Emerging virus infections of humans and animals
Professor Osterhaus is Director of the Center of Infection Medicine and Zoonosis Research at the University of Veterinary Medicine Hannover, Germany, and cofounder/CSO of Viroclinics-DDL BV and ViroNative BV (both spin-outs of Erasmus MC) and CR2O. He was head of the Department of Viroscience at Erasmus MC Rotterdam until 2014.
He has a long track record as a researcher and project leader of numerous major scientific projects. At Erasmus MC, he has run a diagnostic virology lab with more than 40 staff and a research virology lab with over 150 personnel. His research programme follows an integrated “viroscience” concept, bringing together world-leading scientists in molecular virology, immunology, epidemiology, pathogenesis, and intervention studies for human and animal virus infections.
Among his major accomplishments are the discovery of more than 70 new viruses of humans and animals (e.g. human metapneumovirus, coronaviruses, influenza viruses), elucidation of the pathogenesis of major human and animal virus infections, and development of novel intervention strategies. This has enabled health authorities like the WHO to effectively combat disease outbreaks like SARS and avian influenza. The established spin-outs are among his other societally relevant successes, allowing effective testing and refining of diagnostic tools and other intervention strategies.
Professor Osterhaus has acted as mentor for more than 80 PhD students and holds several key patents. He is the author of more than 1300 papers in peer-reviewed journals, together cited more than 75,000 times with an H index of 120. He holds several senior editorships and has received numerous prestigious awards. He is a member of the Dutch and German National Academies of Sciences, member of the Belgium Academia of Medicine, and Commander of the Order of the Dutch Lion.
Bio of Prof. Colin Russell
Prof. Colin Russell
ESWI Board Member, Academic Medical Center, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Nationality: American, British
Position: Professor of Applied Evolutionary Biology, University of Amsterdam Faculty of Medicine
Research field: Virus Evolution
ESWI member since 2019
Professor Russell was a member of the University of Cambridge from 2002 to 2017; first as a PhD student, then postdoctoral research associate (2006) and junior research fellow (2008), and finally as a Royal Society University Research Fellow (2009). From 2008 to 2011, he was also a research fellow at the US National Institutes of Health. In 2017, he moved to AMC (Academic Medical Center, university hospital and Faculty of Medicine of the University of Amsterdam) to head the Laboratory of Applied Evolutionary Biology.
Prof Russell’s research focuses on connecting processes at the within-host, between-host, and population scales, to understand the dynamics of influenza viruses and other respiratory pathogens. His research uses a combination of wet-lab and computational tools to study the interactions of processes at each of these scales. In addition to his research activities, he has been an advisor to the WHO influenza vaccine strain selection committee and he is the chair of the Infection Program of the Amsterdam Institute of Infection and Immunity.
Prof Russell has published extensively in leading scientific journals including Science, Nature, PNAS, and eLife. He is also the recipient of substantial research funding including grants from the Royal Society (UK), the US National Institutes of Health, and the Wellcome Trust. He is a current ERC and NWO Vici laureate.
Bio of Mrs. Debora MacKenzie
Mrs. Debora MacKenzie
Science journalist specialising in infectious disease and author of “Stopping the Next Pandemic”, France
Position: Journalist, New Scientist
Debora MacKenzie has been a major contributor to New Scientist, the British science and technology weekly, since 1982. For many years she has mostly written about infectious disease, arms control, resource management, fisheries, food production, issues emerging from social complexity and the scientific understanding of social phenomena such as migration, denialism, economic development and political organisation. Her educational background is in biology, with graduate work in electrophysiology and pharmacology. She has lived in continental Europe since 1980, formerly in Brussels, currently near Geneva, Switzerland.
Her recent book “Stopping the next pandemic, how COVID-19 can help us save humanity” was published in 2020 and revised in 2021 published by The Bridge Street Press:
In a gripping, accessible narrative, she lays out the shocking story of how the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic happened and how to make sure this never happens again.
Bio of Dr. Maria Van Kerkhove
Dr. Maria Van Kerkhove
Dr. Maria Van Kerkhove is the COVID-19 Technical Lead for the World Health Organization and the Head of Emerging Diseases and Zoonoses in WHO’s Health Emergencies Programme. She is an infectious disease epidemiologist.
Van Kerkhove’s research spans zoonotic emerging and re-emerging high threat pathogens such as avian influenza, MERS-CoV, SARS, SARS-CoV-2, Ebola, Marburg, plague and Zika. She is responsible for the health operations and technical aspects of the global COVID-19 response as well as developing strategies for the prevention, preparedness and control of epidemic and pandemic zoonotic pathogens. For more than 25 years, her research has focused on factors associated with transmission between animals and humans, the epidemiology of zoonotic pathogens, and ensuring that research directly informs public health policies for action.
Van Kerkhove completed her undergraduate degree at Cornell University, an MS Degree in epidemiology at Stanford University and a PhD in infectious disease epidemiology at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. Prior to joining WHO in 2017, she was the Head of the Outbreak Investigation Task Force at Institut Pasteur’s Center for Global Health, in Paris, where she was responsible for establishing public health rapid response teams for infectious disease outbreaks. Her previous roles include a senior fellow at Imperial College London in the MRC Center for Outbreak Analysis and Modelling, and an epidemiologist at the Institut Pasteur in Cambodia.
Bio of Prof. Zhengli Shi
Prof. Zhengli Shi
Wuhan Institute of virology, China
Shi Zhengli is a Chinese virologist who researches SARS-like coronaviruses of bat origin. Shi directs the Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases at the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV). In 2017, Shi and her colleague Cui Jie discovered that the SARS coronavirus likely originated in a population of cave-dwelling horseshoe bats in Xiyang Yi Ethnic Township, Yunnan. She came to prominence in the popular press as “Batwoman” during the COVID-19 pandemic for her work with bat coronaviruses. Shi was included in Time’s 100 Most Influential People of 2020.
Shi graduated from Wuhan University in 1987 with a bachelor’s degree in genetics.She received her master’s degree from the Wuhan Institute of Virology of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) in 1990, and she received her PhD at the Montpellier 2 University in France in 2000.
Bio of Dr. Wolfgang Philipp
Dr. Wolfgang Philipp
Wolfgang Philipp is the acting director of the new DG Health Emergency Preparedness and Response Authority (HERA) in the European Commission. Prior to this, he was the Head of Unit for crisis management and preparedness in the Public Health, Country Knowledge, Crisis Management Directorate of the Commission. The unit would deal with activities contributing to preparedness and crisis management related to cross-border health threats, vaccination policy, antimicrobial resistance, HIV, tuberculosis, hepatitis policy, joint procurement of medical countermeasures, global health security and other files.
He holds a PhD in microbiology from the University of Paris, France, and has been working in tuberculosis research at the Institut Pasteur, and at the Universities of Bern and Basel. Philipp was a Member of the Basel Institute of Immunology before joining the European Commission in 2001.
PROVIDED BY HERA:
Mr Wolfgang Philipp is Acting Director of the new DG Health Emergency Preparedness and Response Authority (HERA) in the European Commission. HERA is dealing with:
Developing the Health Emergency Preparedness and Response Authority
Implementing the EU Vaccine Strategy to accelerate the development, manufacturing and deployment of COVID-19 vaccines
Planning and implementing actions under the European bio-defence preparedness plan called 'HERA Incubator'
He holds a PhD in microbiology of the University of Paris, France, and has been working in tuberculosis research at the Institut Pasteur, and at the Universities of Bern and Basel and was a Member of the Basel Institute of Immunology before joining the European Commission in 2001.
Bio of Dr. Rino Rappuoli
Dr. Rino Rappuoli
Bio coming soon.
Bio of Prof. Christian Drosten
Prof. Christian Drosten
Charité Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Germany
Christian Drosten has a clinical virology background. He started working on virus detection when PCR-based blood donor screening was developed in the 1990s by his supervisor Kurt Roth at University of Frankfurt. After his thesis he moved on to work on emerging viruses at the Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine in Hamburg. Having discovered the SARS agent in 2003, he started working on coronaviruses more specifically, with a focus on their cross-host adaptive processes. In recent years he has done a lot of work on principal epidemiological aspects of MERS in humans and camels. Description of viral diversity, mainly of RNA viruses in mammalian and insect hosts, has been another interest ever since. Several projects in Africa have resulted from this work.
Over the past three years he moved most of his team from the university of Bonn to Charité. Several former group members have become independent during the process, and he has given high priority to assisting them in establishing their own groups. He still co-supervises a few PhD projects that started during the transition time.
University of Toronto’s Dalla Lana School of Public Health, Canada
Fisman is a professor of epidemiology at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto and a practicing internist with a focus on infectious diseases at Michael Garron Hospital.
He is a physician epidemiologist with research interests that fall at the intersection of applied epidemiology, mathematical modelling, and applied health economics. He is interested in developing and applying novel methodological tools that allow physicians and public health experts to make the best possible decisions around communicable disease control, using the best available data.
Fisman completed a residency in internal medicine at both McGill and Brown Universities, before completing a fellowship at the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Centre in Boston, and a Master of Public Health from Harvard School of Public Health. Dr. Fisman was also an AHRQ fellow in health policy at the Harvard Centre for Risk Analysis from 1998 to 2001.
Bio of Prof. David Heymann
Prof. David Heymann
Chatham House, United Kingdom
David Heymann holds a BA in general science from Penn State University, an M.D from Wake Forest School of Medicine, and a DTM&H from London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM). He is currently Professor of Infectious Disease Epidemiology at LSHTM and Head of the Centre on Global Health Security at Chatham House, London. From 2012 to March 2017 he was chairman of Public Health England.
For 22 years Heymann was based at the World Health Organization (WHO) in Geneva on secondment from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) during which time he rose from Chief of Research of the Global Programme on AIDS to Founding Director of the Programme on Emerging and other Communicable Diseases. He then was named Executive Director of the Communicable Diseases Cluster, a position from which he headed the global response to SARS, and finally was named Assistant Director for Health Security and the Director General’s Representative for Polio Eradication.
Before joining WHO Heymann was based for 13 years in sub-Saharan Africa on assignment from CDC where he worked Cameroon, Cote d’Ivoire, DRC and Malawi. During this period he participated in the response to the first, second and third outbreaks of Ebola hemorrhagic fever in DRC, investigated human monkeypox outbreaks throughout central and western Africa, and supported ministries of health in field research aimed at better control of malaria, measles, tuberculosis and other infectious diseases. Prior to joining CDC Heymann worked in India for two years as a medical epidemiologist in the WHO smallpox eradication programme.
Heymann is an elected fellow of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies (US) and the Academy of Medical Sciences (UK), and has received seven different public health awards, including the Heinz Award on the Human Condition, that have provided funding for the establishment of an on-going mentorship programme at the International Association of Public Health Institutes (IANPHI).
Heymann has published over 200 peer reviewed articles, commentaries and book chapters, and is the editor of the Control of Communicable Diseases Manual, a major global reference for public health and health protection. In 2009 he was appointed an honorary Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (CBE) for service to global public health.
Bio of Prof. Linfa Wang
Prof. Linfa Wang
Duke-NUS Medical school, Singapore
Prof Wang is a Professor in the Programme in Emerging Infectious Diseases at Duke-NUS Medical School and the inaugural Executive Director of the Programme for Research in Epidemic Preparedness and Response (PREPARE), Singapore. He is one of the world’s leading experts in zoonotic diseases, bat immunology and pathogen discovery.
His early research was at the Monash Centre for Molecular Biology and Medicine. In 1990, he joined the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO), Australian Animal Health Laboratory (AAHL) where he played a leading role in identifying bats as the natural host of the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) virus. His research then extended from bat-borne viruses to better understand virus-bat interaction and how bats co-exist with a large number of viruses without developing clinical diseases. His recent research contributions include developing antibody based serological tests to detect the SARS-CoV-2 virus, responsible for the COVID-19 outbreak, and the early and successful culture of the virus from an infected patents sample. His team is currently focusing on research into the origin of SARS-CoV-2, developing assays which can better assess vaccine efficacy in the context of a potential immunity passport strategy and novel vaccination strategy to broaden protective immunity against future variants and emerging SARS-related coronaviruses.
Prof Wang is a member of multiple World Health Organization committees on COVID-19. His work has been recognised internationally through various international awards, numerous invited speeches at major international conferences and more than 500 scientific papers including many top scientific publications in Science, Nature, New England Journal of Medicine, Lancet, along with nice patents and many invited book chapters. He holds a number of honorary positions and memberships and has received numerous awards. Prof Wang was elected to the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering in 2010 and the American Academy of Microbiology in 2021 in recognition of his expertise in new and emerging diseases. He received the Singapore’s President Science Award in 2021. He is also active internationally by serving on various editorial boards for publication in the areas of virology, microbiology and infectious diseases. He is currently the Editor-in-Chief of the Virology Journal.
Prof Wang holds a PhD degree from the University of California, Davis USA and a Bachelor’s degree from the East China Normal University, Shanghai China.
Bio of Dr. Lwazi Manzi
Dr. Lwazi Manzi
AU Commission on Africa’s COVID-19 Response, South Africa
Dr Lwazi Manzi is a medical doctor specialised in Emergency Medicine. She obtained her degrees from the University Of Cape Town.
She has a strong history of executive and industry leadership. Her 15 year career spans emergency medicine, music, television and film production and media relations. In 2019 she was appointed Media Liaison Officer and the Spokesperson for the Minister of Health in South Africa during a pivotal period in the history of South Africa’s health policy, namely the introduction of the National Health Insurance bill and through the management of the COVID-19 pandemic. Dr Manzi has been appointed as Head of the newly created Secretariat of the African Union Commission on COVID-19. The Commission will work within the established African Continental Strategy structures and the Africa CDC on the control of the COVID pandemic.
Bio of Dr. Aeron Hurt
Dr. Aeron Hurt
Dr. Aeron Hurt is the Principal Global Medical Director, for both COVID-19 and Influenza at Roche, Basel, Switzerland.
Aeron was previously Head of the Antiviral Susceptibility Analysis Surveillance Unit and Research group at the WHO Collaborating Centre for Reference and Research on Influenza, Melbourne, Australia. Aeron has had a career-long interest in antivirals and regularly acted as an external Temporary Advisor to the WHO. He has completed a number of short-term consultancies for the WHO, and national Governments related to influenza surveillance, epidemiology and laboratory analysis.
Aeron has published over 180 peer-reviewed research and review papers in the field of influenza, COVID-19 and virology including articles in Science, Nature, New England Journal of Medicine, Nature Medicine and Lancet Infectious Diseases. Aeron completed a PhD in influenza virology at Monash University and is currently an Associate Professor with the University of Melbourne.
Bio of Dr. Mark Eccleston-Turner
Dr. Mark Eccleston-Turner
King's College London, United Kingdom
Dr Mark Eccleston-Turner is a Senior Lecturer in Global Health Law. He specialises in infectious diseases and international law, particularly the law of international organizations, pathogen sharing and equitable access to vaccines in a pandemic.
Mark has provided advice to the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office and Department for International Development, and is a member of UK Parliament COVID-19 Outbreak Expert Database. He has appeared as a witness before the Foreign Affairs Select Committee, and has provided evidence to the Joint Committee on the National Security.
He has held visiting positions at the Brocher Foundation, in Geneva, Georgetown University School of Law, and as an Emerging Leader in Biosecurity Fellow at the Johns Hopkins Centre for Health Security. He has also worked as a Consultant to the World Health Organisation.
Mark regularly appears in national and international media to discuss international law and infectious diseases. His interviews have appeared on: Al Jazeera TV, Euronews, BBC News, Sky News, New York Times, Washington Post, South China Morning Post, and The Times. In 2021, in recognition of his work on equitable access to vaccines, Mark was made a Fellow of the Royal Society of the Arts.
Bio of Dr. Anjana Ahuja
Dr. Anjana Ahuja
Financial Times, United Kingdom
Anjana Ahuja is a science columnist at the Financial Times in London, writing a weekly column on science, technology and global health.
She was one of the first journalists, in early January 2020, to cover the emergence of a novel pneumonia in Wuhan. She subsequently co-authored a widely acclaimed book, Spike: The Virus versus The People, with Wellcome Trust director Sir Jeremy Farrar. It was named as The Times’ top science book of 2021 and has been shortlisted for the 2022 Orwell Prize for Political Writing. Anjana is a trustee of Sense About Science, a small charity which champions the use of evidence in policymaking and public life.
She has a PhD in space physics from Imperial College London.
Last minute registration
Important information for last minute registrations:
From right before the Summit until the end of the final session, our Info Desk is available (the yellow icon on the bottom right corner). Click on the icon, and ask them for your late registry entrance. After confirming your information is correct, an account will be set up for you, and they will provide you with your personal attendee code. You can use this code to follow the Summit online, and participate in the questions and answers.
Please note that it might take some time to set up this account for you.