European project EDENext experts meeting: control of emerging disease vectors and reservoirs

European experts on diseases transmitted by vectors will meet from 18-22 March, 2013 in Bellaterra (Barcelona). The purpose is to discuss the most recent results of the EDENext project".

"Biology and control of vector-borne infections in Europe" is the task set for EDENext, a research project (2011-2014) under the Health component of the European Commission"s 7th Framework Programme for Research and Technological Development (FP7), implemented by CIRAD and 45 other scientific partners in 22 countries. The Centre de Recerca en Sanitat Animal (CReSA), UAB-IRTA is one of the partners.

Better public health in North and South

The project is coordinated by the Centre de coopération internationale en recherche agronomique pour le développement (CIRAD). As Renaud Lancelot, the EDENext coordinator, explains: "following EDEN (2004-2010), which focused on the effects of environmental changes on the emergence of diseases transmitted by vectors (mosquitoes, ticks, etc.), EDENext goes further towards understanding the ecological and biological mechanisms that result in epidemics. We place strong emphasis on controlling disease risk and on the social and economic factors favouring contamination."

Besides research itself, one of the strength of EDENext is to build a network of European and international laboratories and researchers to combat emerging diseases threatening our populations and economies.

The EDENext research

The aim is to propose appropriate, environmentally friendly control strategies. Specialist teams provide support in the form of the geographical, environmental and climate data required, and help in developing models of the risks of the introduction, emergence or spread of vectors and pathogens.

Research centres on the following vector groups:

  • Ticks and the risk of transmission of "new" pathogens such as Anaplasma, Bartonella, etc, or of Crimean-Congo haemorrhagic fever virus.
  • Mosquitoes such as Aedes albopictus present in Catalonia and many other European regions, and the transmission of dengue and Chikungunya, or Culex mosquitoes and the transmission of West Nile virus. The latter caused a major outbreak in Greece in 2010, and several others in Central Europe, and around the Mediterranean basin in 2011-12.
  • Sandflies and the risk of transmission of Leishmania and viruses that cause summer encephalitis in several Mediterranean countries including Spain.
  • Culicoides biting midges and the transmission of viruses that cause animal diseases: bluetongue, or African horse sickness, which affects Africa, including Senegal, a partner in the EDENext project, and already hit the Iberian Peninsula in the past.
  • Rodent and insectivore-borne pathogens, such as Hantaviruses, Orthopoxviruses, and the lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus complex.

More information about EDENext:

Dr Nonito Pagès Martínez
Investigator in charge of the research line on Arboviruses and arthropd vectors
Email: nitu.pages@cresa.uab.cat
Phone no.: +34 93 581 43 42
Fax: +34 93 581 44 90
Edifici CReSA. Campus UAB
08193 Bellaterra (Barcelona) Spain

EDENext website: www.edenext.eu

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