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26 Jul 2016

The legacies of Elie Metchnikoff: symposium at the Institut Pasteur Paris, September 26, 2016

Elie METCHNIKOFF: From embryology to aging, from phagocytes to microbiota
Paris, September 26, 2016

This year, we celebrate one century of the many legacies of the great scientist Elie Metchnikoff. The Institut Pasteur organizes a one-day symposium that will illustrate the impact of his work on modern biology. The Institut is also displaying an exhibition that presents the life and multiple achievements of Metchnikoff, who worked here for 28 years.

Metchnikoff is considered the father of phagocytes, innate cellular immunity, probiotics and gerontology. His initial work as a comparative embryologist led him to be one of the founding fathers of immunology, and develop a new understanding of physiology and pathology. As an illustration of his boundless curiosity, his team investigated inflammation in guinea pigs, rats and frogs, infectious diseases in monkeys, caimans and geese, and aging in parrots, rabbits, dogs and humans. He then explored the gut microbiota of these animals and generated germ-free organisms. His later studies led him to propose that fermented milk delays the deleterious and pro-aging effects of toxic compounds released by putrefactive gut bacteria. Finally, he was also a philosopher, and ventured into writing essays on natural harmony, human disharmony, pessimism and, in the face of it all, optimism. In all these fields, Metchnikoff has been a visionary, publishing more than 200 papers in the Annales de l’Institut Pasteur. He has also been a remarkable team leader and mentor, supervising more than 100 young trainees and collaborators.

This symposium will begin with an opening talk to remind us of the life and many achievements of Elie Metchnikoff. The sessions will then illustrate the four major scientific fields pioneered by Metchnikoff - embryology, macrophages and immunity, microbiota, and aging. The speakers will illustrate these periods through their own work, and project their modern visions of Metchnikoff’s legacy. Finally, a closing talk will reflect on the visions of Metchnikoff for the future of biology.

For registration, program and more information, please click on the poster below:

12 Jul 2016

Dr Keiji Fukuda, WHO Assistant Director-General will be in HKU on July 22, 2016

Dr Keiji Fukuda, Special Representative for Antimicrobial Resistance and World Health Organization Assistant Director-General will give a seminar at the Public Health Research Centre (PHRC) of the University of Hong Kong entitled The Nature of Present and Future Global Health Challenges, on Friday July 22, 2016.

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) can be considered indicative of what global public health challenges in the modern era have become. The core technical issue is that a combination of microbial genetics and widespread use of antimicrobial medicines in human health and agricultural sectors is driving increasingly higher levels of resistance to such medicines among a wide range of pathogens. One immediate consequences is an estimated 700,000 deaths per year associated with such resistance, and projections of up to 10 million death per year by 2050. This seminar will look at the underlying factors contributing to the widespread use and overuse of such antimicrobial medicines, the combined impact of this issue, the breadth of groups and sectors needed to achieve an effective and sustained response to this growing global health security issue, the major challenges of AMR and the options for continued momentum after the high-level meeting at the United Nations General Assembly in September 2016.

Date: July 22, 2016 (Friday)
Time: 11:30 to 13:00 (sandwich lunch from 11:30 to 11:45; seminar begins at 11:45)


Venue: Mrs Chen Yang Foo Oi Telemedicine Centre (MTC), 2/F, William MW Mong Block, LKS Faculty of Medicine Building, 21 Sassoon Road, Pokfulam, Hong Kong
Online registration is available here.

Please register on or before noon of July 19, 2016 (Tuesday). Sandwiches will be provided to registered participants of the seminar. 

24 Jun 2016

International Call for Applications for a Leader of 4-year research group within the Institut Pasteur in Côte d’Ivoire

Closing date for applications: September 30th, 2016

The Department of International Affairs of the Institut Pasteur is launching an international call for applications for future leader of 4-Year Groups (G4) within the Institut Pasteur in Côte d’Ivoire.
The candidate will be appointed head of a research group for 4 years and will receive start-up funding that includes his/her own salary and potentially that of engineers, technicians and doctoral students, as well as basic laboratory equipment and an operating budget. The candidate should subsequently obtain fresh funding to maintain his/her group on the longer term.
Chronic hepatitis, cirrhosis and primary liver cancer (mostly hepatocellular carcinomas), related to chronic Hepatitis B and C infections or other etiological factors, represent a major public health problem in African countries at large and in Côte d'Ivoire in particular. Biomarkers that might reliably indicate the stage and predict the evolution of the liver disease would be of major value for the implementation of the most appropriate and efficient measures for patients' management.
The Institut Pasteur in Côte d’Ivoire is a national institute whose missions include public health activities, teaching and research. It is part of the Institut Pasteur International Network that comprises 33 institutes worldwide.
Applications are completed exclusively online:

Contact: Eliane Coëffier
For more information see the webpage:

24 Jun 2016

A trail to a vaccine against Zika and Dengue viruses?

Félix Rey, Head of the Structural Virology Laboratory at the Institut Pasteur in Paris and his co-workers from the Institut Pasteur and the French National Centre for Scientific Research, in collaboration with Imperial College London and the University of Vienna, Austria, have identified antibodies that can efficiently neutralize both the dengue virus and the Zika virus. The description of the binding site for these antibodies on the viral envelope, identical for both viruses, could lead to the development of a universal vaccine that offers simultaneous protection against dengue and Zika virus disease. These results were published in the journal Nature on June 23, 2016.

3D structure of the Zika virus envelope protein (red, yellow and blue) in complex with the neutralizing antibody (in green and white). © Institut Pasteur

Structural basis of potent Zika–dengue virus antibody cross-neutralization

Barba-Spaeth G, Dejnirattisai W, Rouvinski A, Vaney MC, Medits I, Sharma A, Simon-Lorière E, Sakuntabhai A, Cao-Lormeau VM, Haouz A, England P, Stiasny K, Mongkolsapaya J, Heinz FX, Screaton GR, Rey FA

Nature (2016) doi:10.1038/nature18938

Read the full story on the Institut Pasteur website.

16 May 2016

Institut Pasteur International Network - Asia/Pacific Regional Meeting, Shanghai, 18-20 May 2016

From 18 to 20 May 2016, the nine institutes of the Asia-Pacific region will meet at the Institut Pasteur of Shanghai/Chinese Academy of Science. They will review their current institutional partnerships and initiate new ones. Discussions will help to develop specific research, public health as well as regional educational programs.
Different sessions will address the following topics: outbreaks and emergencies, antimicrobial resistance, cancers induced by viruses, industrial valorization, funding mechanisms and training & teaching strategies. The discussions ahead of the working groups meetings will be open to public.

The Institut Pasteur International Network includes 33 institutes around the world, located in 5 regional centers (i.e. Europe, Asia-Pacific, Americas, Africa, Maghreb-Iran). Each of these groups ensure a regional coverage on research, surveillance and control of infectious diseases, with close synergy between regions creating a common space to share technologies, methods, expertise resources and data throughout the 5 continents.

Please find the program of the meeting here.

The Institut Pasteur International Network Asia-Pacific Regional meeting will gather invited speakers, Institut Pasteur and Institut Pasteur International Network representatives and members of the nine institutes in the Asia-Pacific region:

- Institut Pasteur of Shanghai/Chinese Academy of Sciences
- Hong Kong University Pasteur Research Pole
- National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Hanoi, Vietnam
- Institut Pasteur in Nha Trang, Vietnam
- Institut Pasteur in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
- Institut Pasteur in Cambodia
- Institut Pasteur in New Caledonia
- Institut Pasteur in Laos
- Institut Pasteur in Korea

12 May 2016

“The Dengue Peril”, an interview of Dr. Philippe Dussart, Institut Pasteur in Cambodia

While the Zika outbreak is currently one of the hot topic in the fields of virology and public health, another arbovirus stays close to international attention: Dengue virus. The world first dengue vaccine (Dengvaxia® (CYD-TDV), developed by Sanofi Pasteur) has been registered in Mexico, the Philippines, Brazil and El Salvador. In April 2016, the WHO Advisory Group of Experts (SAGE) on immunization emitted its first recommendation after reviewing the vaccine: introduce it "only in geographic settings with high endemicity". WHO has announced that the organization will publish a more detailed report in July 2016 to specify its position and its recommendations regarding the vaccine.

Dr. Philippe Dussart, Institut Pasteur in Cambodia. © Healthwise

Dengvaxia and dengue vaccine development is just one of the subjects addressed by Dr. Philippe Dussart, Head of the Virology Unit at the Institut Pasteur in Cambodia in an interview called "The Dengue Peril" by the Cambodian magazine Healthwise Digest (Vol. 2 No.12 March 2016). Dr. Dussart comes back to the increase of dengue cases in Cambodia, the disease prevention, the time needed to develop vaccines, the absence of treatment drug.

Read the interview here.

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