Journalists and scientific communicators visit the CReSA

On the occasion of the 10th anniversary and the inauguration of the high biological security building, the Centre for Research on Animal Health (CReSA) organized an open day for journalist and scientific communicators on 11 April.

The meeting brought together a total of 17 journalists, editors and scientific communicators from journals, press offices and medias of the sector interested in knowing the sanitary surveillance actions carried out in the CReSA.

Joaquim Segalés, Director of the CReSA, reviewed the current threats to global public health, such as avian influenza, West Nile virus, Chikungunya virus and Rift Valley fever. He also explained the need to have a centre for research such as the CReSA, which serves as a public service with its level 3 Biocontainment Unit, unique in Catalonia. Jordi Casal, researcher at CReSA and Professor at the UAB, explained the surveillance programs in which CReSA is involved at the request of public administrations, such as the West Nile virus, avian influenza in wild birds, cysticercosis and tuberculosis surveillance. Finally, Merche Mora, the laboratory Technical Coordinator, offered a guided tour around the CReSA facilities. The attendants could visit some laboratories, including those of entomology, virology and bacteriology.

The Biocontainment Unit was opened for the first time to journalists and some of the attendants had the opportunity to visit it. They were guided by David Solanes, Services Director, and Francesc Xavier Abad, Laboratories Manager. In this Unit, we work with pathogens listed as notifiable to the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) and with zoonotic pathogens that may affect humans. Some studied organisms include: prions, West Nile virus, highly pathogenic avian influenza, Chikungunya virus, Rift Valley fever virus, classical swine fever virus, African swine fever virus and Mycobacterium tuberculosis.

During the visit, it was also possible to talk and interview the researchers about the most topical issues either in public and animal health.

Dr Virginia Aragón

Download the resources for journalists of the open day:

http://www.cresa.cat/cresa3/default.asp?mod=strmenu206

For further information:

Elisabet Rodríguez González
Head of Communication
Campus UAB, edifici CReSA
08193 Bellaterra (Barcelona)
Tel.: +34 93 581 45 64 Fax: +34 93 581 44 90

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