50 million people. More than a century later, we should be ready to take advantage of the hard lessons we’ve been forced to learn from COVID-19. One of the most important takeaways is that our national and global biosecurity capabilities are dangerously underdeveloped.

Biosecurity is the applied scientific capability of protecting humans, plants and animals against biological threats such as COVID-19, Ebola, SARS, avian flu and many more. Pathogens can be natural or engineered and the risk of both has been steadily mounting. The world’s burgeoning human population continues to encroach upon previously unpopulated natural habitats, bringing people and livestock into contact with wild animals and increasing the potential for pathogen transmission between species. At the same time, globalization means people are traveling internationally more than ever and crossing paths with one another in every corner of the world. All of this interaction can create conditions for infectious diseases to take root and spread at alarming speed.

Consider that, in the last three decades, thirty new human pathogens have been detected worldwide — 75% of which originated in animals. Recently, scientists found more than 30 viruses frozen in ice taken from the Tibetan Plateau in China — most of which have never been identified. It doesn’t take a mathematician to see the potential impact of that discovery, and while not all of them are an immediate threat, scientists estimate nearly 1.7 million undiscovered viruses currently may exist in wildlife. The potential for new viral pandemic challenges is staggering and can only be confronted by biotechnology. While new biotechnological discoveries and advancements are happening at an increasingly rapid rate, the need for a shared mission between government and commercial sectors working harmoniously to bridge the gap between biosecurity and a new bioeconomy is imperative.

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如何预防下一次大流行?

政客

贾斯汀·桑切斯于2021年8月12日发布

在过去18个月中,我们的世界经历了自1918年大流感以来最致命的大流行。那年冬天,在第一次世界大战最激烈的时候,一种病毒在堪萨斯州的一个军营爆发,然后在全世界范围内爆发,造成超过100人死亡5000万人. 一个多世纪后,我们应该准备好利用我们被迫从新冠病毒19中吸取的惨痛教训。最重要的收获之一是,我们的国家和全球生物安全能力严重不足。

生物安全是保护人类、植物和动物免受新冠肺炎、埃博拉、非典、禽流感等生物威胁的应用科学能力。病原体可以是自然的,也可以是工程的,两者的风险都在稳步上升。世界上迅速增长的人口继续侵占以前无人居住的自然栖息地,使人和牲畜接触野生动物,增加了物种间病原体传播的可能性。与此同时,全球化意味着人们比以往任何时候都更加国际化,在世界的每个角落都有彼此的路径。所有这些相互作用可以为传染病扎根和以惊人的速度传播创造条件。

想想看,在过去的三年里,三十刚出现的全世界已检测到人类病原体,其中75%为起源于动物. 最近,科学家们发现了超过30种病毒从中国青藏高原采集的冰层中冰冻——其中大部分从未被确认。科学家估计,不需要数学家就能看出这一发现的潜在影响,虽然并非所有这些都是直接的威胁170万目前未发现的病毒可能存在于野生动物中。新的病毒性流行病挑战的潜力是惊人的,只有生物技术才能应对。虽然新的生物技术发现和进步正在以越来越快的速度发生,但政府和商业部门之间必须共同承担使命,协调工作,弥合生物安全和新的生物经济之间的差距。

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