The first Annual Meeting of our Network of Excellence was held in Poland. The first two days in Lublin and the last day in the new building at NVRI in Pulawy. 170 delegates attended representing all the partner institutes.
The first day the Coordinator of EPIZONE, Dr Piet van Rijn (CIDC-Lelystad, The Netherlands) and Dr Isabel Minguez-Tudela, representative of the European Commission (Directorate-General for Research Biotechnology Agriculture and Food Research) welcomed everybody. Piet gave an overview about EPIZONE: what EPIZONE is, what we have done up to now and that we have still 4 years to go. Isabel encouraged everybody to join the EU Seventh Research Framework Programme, especially the Chinese participants and was delighted that our Chinese partner institutes were able to send so many delegates to the Annual Meeting.
Invited speakers Wednesday morning
There were two other invited speakers on Wednesday morning. Dr Elisabeth Erlacher-Vindel, representative of OIE and member of the External Advisory Panel of EPIZONE, who gave a presentation entitled: "World organization for animal health (OIE): presentation on its activities with special attention to Epizone related topics" and Professor Julie Fitzpatrick, Scientific Director and Chief Executive, Moredun Research Institute, Scotland: "Disease control: challenges, collaboration and conflicts".
Theme presentations and meetings:
Later presentations were made about each Theme. Each Theme had a key-note speaker and the Work Package Leaders gave an overview about what was been done and what they intend to do, this was followed by free communications and discussions about their theme. Several meetings were held in parallel, and another was held with the financial officer about the financial aspects of EPIZONE.
Key-notes speakers of the Themes:
- Professor Christian Griot, Director IVI, Switzerland and member of the External Advisory Panel of EPIZONE: "Avian influenza in wild water fowl at the lake of Constance; a multi national study".
- Professor Katharina Stärk, Royal Veterinary College, United Kingdom: "Risk analysis in a dynamic environment-mission impossible?".
- Professor Markus Czub, Faculty of (Veterinary) Medicine, University of Calgary, Canada and member of the External Advisory Panel of EPIZONE: "Pathogenesis, prevention and diagnosis of Nipah virus".
- Manzoor Hussain, FAO Regional Epidemiologist, Islamabad, Pakistan: "Transboundary animal diseases and their control strategies in Central Asian Countries".
Pulawy - 1 June 2007
On Friday, we went to Pulawy and listened to the presentations given in the marvelous auditorium, in the new building of NVRI. Dr Tadeusz Wijaszka, Director of NVRI, Pulawy, warmly welcomed us in his brand new Institute.
He was followed by the invited speaker Dr Phillip Mellor, IAH, Pirbright, United Kingdom: "Bluetongue: vectors, epidemiology and climate-change".
Some participants also visited the new state of the art facilities of NVRI (o.a. High containment level). After lunch we had to say goodbye, after enjoying an inspiring three day meeting, a fantastic opportunity to network in a friendly atmosphere. We would like to see you all in Brescia next year on the second Annual Meeting and hope that we have another great meeting like we had in Poland, well organized by our hosts and with great hospitality!