The DZIF and Canada’s McMaster University are coming together in the fight against pandemics
Viruses and bacteria do not stop at national borders. International collaboration is the only way to meet the global challenges in infection research. Since its foundation, the German Center for Infection Research (DZIF) has frequently worked with partners abroad. To be better prepared for pandemics in the future, it has now entered into a partnership with McMaster University in Ontario, Canada.
Newly emerging viruses have been a research focus since the establishment of the DZIF. The DZIF develops for example vaccines and drugs for Ebola, Zika, MERS or other coronaviruses. A declared goal is to detect future outbreaks as early as possible and to be prepared for their rapid management. Pandemic preparedness can only be accomplished in collaboration with international partner organisations.
“We’re very much looking forward to the upcoming collaborations with the renowned McMaster University in Canada to promote and intensify scientific exchange on infection research across borders,” explains the Chairman of the DZIF Board, Prof. Dirk Busch.
McMaster University – home to Canada’s Global Nexus on Pandemics and Biological Threats – is also highly experienced in pandemic research and sees great value in this new partnership with the DZIF.
“We have seen the serious and disruptive consequences of COVID-19 and how unprepared the world was to respond to this challenge,” said Dr. David Farrar, President of McMaster University. “We know the importance of strong international research collaborations in addressing global issues, and this partnership will ensure we maximize our ability to find efficient and effective solutions to future global health crises.”
The partners are currently mapping out joint research projects and workshops. They are also devising plans to promote communication between students and researchers and establish an environment where exchange of information and publications is as open as possible.
The DZIF and McMaster University recognize that pandemic preparedness will be a particularly important research topic in the coming years. Furthermore, they agree that their strategy should also include the fight against increasing antibiotic resistance. According to a recent estimate published in Lancet, antibiotic resistance has been responsible for 1.27 million deaths in 2019 alone. Experts are calling it a silently emerging pandemic.
About the DZIF
At the German Center for Infection Research (DZIF), about 500 scientists and phy-sicians from 35 institutions throughout Germany are jointly developing new methods for the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of infectious diseases. Ma-jor goal is ‘translational research’: the rapid and effective implementation of basic research findings into clinical practice. Thus, the DZIF paves the way for the devel-opment of new vaccines, diagnostics and medications against infections. For more information, please visit: www.dzif.de.
About McMaster University
McMaster University is among Canada’s most research-intensive universities and is consistently ranked in the top 20 in the world in health sciences. It is home to Canada’s Global Nexus for Pandemics and Biological Threats – an international network of experts and partners from across disciplines, working together to find solutions to current and future pandemic threats. https://www.mcmaster.ca