What are the benefits of viral prospecting in nonhuman animals?
Featuring Marc Lipsitch

This talk considers how we can measure the public health value of efforts to discover viruses in nonhuman animal populations (virus prospecting) as a means of advancing countermeasures for pandemic and epidemic diseases.

Using the example of filoviruses, we show that there is little evidence to suggest that countermeasure development has been accelerated due to virus prospecting work.

Zooming out, many potentially and actually important pathogens for human health still lack vaccines, so adding more candidate pathogens does not accelerate a rate limiting step. We consider the implications of these findings for policy.

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Event Details

Date: Thursday, February 29

Time: 7:00 pm

In-Person Location: SFU Vancouver, HC 1700 (515 W Hastings St)

Online Location: Webinar
*ASL services will be provided for webinar attendees


Note: Seating is limited. A recording of the lecture will be made available after the event.

About Marc Lipsitch

Marc Lipsitch is Professor of Epidemiology at the Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health. He directs the Center for Communicable Disease Dynamics and the Interdisciplinary Program on Infectious Disease Epidemiology. His scientific research concerns the effect of naturally acquired host immunity, vaccine-induced immunity, and other public health interventions on the population biology of pathogens and the consequences for human health He has authored 400 peer-reviewed publications on antimicrobial resistance, epidemiologic methods, mathematical modeling of infectious disease transmission, pathogen population genomics, research ethics, biosafety/security, and immunoepidemiology of Streptococcus pneumoniae. Dr. Lipsitch is a leader in research and scientific communication on COVID-19. Dr. Lipsitch received his BA in philosophy from Yale and his DPhil in zoology from Oxford. He did postdoctoral work at Emory University and CDC. He is a member of the American Academy of Microbiology and the National Academy of Medicine.

Lecture Topics

One Health: Connections and Collaborations