MediLabSecure Newsletter n°11
July 2020

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SARS CoV-2 in animals
In view of the increasing cases of SARS CoV-2 detection in animals, the Animal Health Research Center (INIA-CISA), coordinator of the animal virology working group, has developed a document summarizing available information, including data from natural and experimental infections.
Based on new studies and reports, this document is being updated on a regular basis.
Do not hesitate to share and disseminate it within your own network!
MediLabSecure off-line training on Preparedness and Response to the Health Emergency from novel Coronavirus SARS CoV-2
The public health working group, coordinated by the Istituto Superiore di Sanità (ISS), has developed an off-line training on “Preparedness and Response to the Health Emergency from novel Coronavirus SARS CoV-2" based on the on-line course developed for the health personnel of the Italian Health Services.
Aiming at strengthening the surveillance and protection capacities of healthcare workers, the course has been adapted in English and French and is structured into three units:
  • features of SARS CoV-2 emergency;
  • surveillance, identification and management of suspects and cases;
  • information for the health personnel on prevention, identification and control in clinical & community settings.
Launch of the MediLabSecure Covid-19 surveillance and impact study to strengthen surveillance and protection capacities in African hospital settings
Healthcare workers are on the front line in the management of the epidemic, with different challenges that include a spectrum of responsibilities ranging from surveillance of cases to clinical management and care of patients; they are daily exposed to the risk of contagion and in case of infection can become potential spreaders. In that sense, they also play an essential role in the implementation of adequate infection prevention and control measures in healthcare facilities.
In this framework, and according to the WHO recommendations to establish a cohort study on healthcare workers, MediLabSecure has launched a multicentric surveillance and impact study in 4 African countries.

EQA on coronaviruses
An EQA on coronaviruses including the SARS CoV-2 new virus has started on June 12th. Supported by the MediLabSecure human virology working group, twenty-three human and animal virology laboratories are participating to make sure the diagnostic is correctly implemented.
This EQA should last a few weeks and it is expected to be completed by the end of the summer.
MediPIET Covid-19 webinar series
MediPIET, a European Union-DG DEVCO funded regional training programme network in field epidemiology, is contributing to the response to Covid-19 pandemic with the implementation of webinar series.
7 editions have been organized so far to share accurate and verified information by leading experts during this COVID-19 pandemic.
All webinars have been recorded and posted on MediPIET website.

View the webinars
MediLabSecure virtual worshop on Covid-19 in action review
A MediLabSecure Covid-19 virtual workshop will be held in next September 2020 (date to be confirmed).  This workshop will be the occasion to share feedbacks and lessons learned from the management of the Covid-19 sanitary crisis and to hightlight the actions carried out in the framework of the project and its impact in the fight against the epidemic.

More information soon.
MediLabSecure workshops postponed
In the context of the current Covid-19 pandemic, several workshops Initially planned in 2020 have to be postponed to 2021.
The second workshop of the human virology working group entitled "Outbreak investigations: new molecular tools for the identification of viral pathogens"  has been rescheduled on May 17-21, 2021, while the first workshops of the animal virology working group CCHFV, RVFV and WNV diagnosis should take place in March 2021 depending on the evolution of the epidemic.
Simplified key of major mosquito vectors in Europe,
North Africa & West Asia
IRD, coordinator of the medical entomology working group, has developed in collaboration with the University of Novi Sad, Serbia, a key of the major mosquito vectors in Europe, North Africa and West Asia.
The key is simplified but helping identification tool, compiling the mosquito species that are of out most importance for both animal and human health. The authors selected morphological features that are quite easily recognised by the beginners and with high diagnostic values to lower the chance of misidentification.
Apart from the key, useful data on ecology, distribution, surveillance, control, vectorial capacity, identification confidence and morphology are provided, with most useful aspect outlined in the summary box.
Enhancing preparedness for arbovirus infections with a One Health approach: the development and implementation of multisectoral risk assessment exercises
A new paper entitled «Enhancing Preparedness for Arbovirus Infections with a One Health Approach: The Development and Implementation of Multisectoral Risk Assessment Exercises" synthetises the methodology of the three Multisectoral Risk Assessments exercises carried out with a One Health approach by the MediLabSecure public health working group during the first phase of the project.
Country representatives of the human and animal virology, medical entomology, and public health sectors involved in the surveillance of vector-borne diseases participated in the exercises, one on West Nile virus, one on Crimean–Congo haemorrhagic fever, and one on Rift Valley fever, assessing the added value of this approach to enhancing cross-sectoral collaboration and collective preparedness to emerging viral infections, as well as improving data collection and data-sharing from different sectors.

Read the article
 Human virology newsletter #5

In addition to the MediLabSecure newsletter, specific newsletters dedicated to the human virology working group activities are also regularly released, and can be accessed on this page of the MediLabSecure website.

Enjoy reading the 5th edition released in July 2020 to keep you updated of what's going on within the network!

Human virology newsletter #5
SARS-CoV-2 failure to infect or replicate in mosquitoes:
an extreme challenge
This research provides the first experimental data to investigate the capacity of SARS-CoV-2 to infect and be transmitted by mosquitoes. Three widely distributed species of mosquito; Aedes aegypti, Ae. albopictus and Culex quinquefasciatus, representing the two most
significant genera of arbovirus vectors that infect people, were tested. Experimental data demonstrates that even under extreme conditions, SARS-CoV-2 virus is unable to replicate in these mosquitoes and therefore cannot be transmitted to people even in the unlikely event that a mosquito fed upon a viremic host.
Read the article
Exposure of humans or animals to SARS-CoV-2 from wild, livestock, companion and aquatic animals
Understanding the risk of exposure of humans or animals to SARS-CoV-2 from animals and their products is essential for containing virus spread, prioritizing research, protecting food systems, and informing national One Health investigations and mitigation measures. This Qualitative Exposure Assessment provides a comprehensive review of available scientific evidence and assessment of exposure risk from different wild or domestic animal species. Results can inform country-level risk assessment and provide the evidence base for targeted SARS-CoV-2 investigations in animals and mitigation options.

Read the article
6th World One Health Conference
The virtual edition of the 6th World One Health Conference will be held from October 30 - November 3, 2020. The coordinators of the MediLabSecure public health working group will be present  at the live session “Addressing zoonotic diseases at the animal‐human ecosystem interface: responding to  threats”chaired by Prof. Ab Osterhaus and Dr. Ramirez, WHOon 31 October, 10:00 AM ‐ 12:00 NOON.
Register now
EU CBRN CoE inter-regional webinar
on Covid-19 contact management
Within the framework of the COVID-19 support to countries of the South East & Eastern Europe (SEEE) region, The Regional Secretariat of the EU CBRN CoE initiative for SEEE is organizing a webinar dedicated to Covid-19 Contact Management on next July, 29th, 2020 at 10:30 am (CET).
In presence of international experts who will share their experience and best practises, this webinar will aim to provide feedback and recommendations on this specific topic which appears to be as a most challenging during response to current pandemic situation.

Join the webinar
Stay tuned for upcoming news!
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MediLabSecure is a project funded by the European Union and coordinated by the Institut Pasteur.

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The MediLabSecure Project is funded by the European Commission and the DG for International Cooperation and Development under the Instrument Contributing to Stability and Peace, linked to the Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear Centres of Excellence initiative – EU CBRN CoE

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