Ebola virus threat: global experts to discuss how to prepare for infectious diseases


TORONTO, November 17, 2014 – What can we do to be better prepared for global health challenges such as the Ebola virus threat?

The ongoing issue will be discussed at “Infectious Diseases: Global Public-Health Challenges of the Next Decade,” the 11th annual International Consortium on Anti-Virals (ICAV symposium, where eminent researchers and young investigators will share their knowledge and ideas. The three-day event is co-hosted by ICAV and York Institute for Health Research, at York University’s Schulich School of Business, November 18-20.

Other diseases under the microscope include H7N9 influenza virus, MERS coronavirus and dengue viruses, as well as drug-resistant tuberculosis.

The symposium will discuss the rise of antibiotic resistance, the increased ease of global transmission, the inadequate surveillance tools, and the public policy deficits compound the problem. It will also focus on new drug development, new approaches to therapies and solutions to the social and cultural obstacles to implementing relevant health policy and treatments.

Julio Frenk, Dean, Harvard School of Public Health and former health minister of Mexico is the keynote speaker on the inaugural day. A noted authority on global health, Frenk helped reform Mexico’s health system and introduced Seguro Popular, a comprehensive national health insurance to provide health care access to millions of previously uninsured Mexicans.

Dr Zarir Udwadia from Mumbai, India and Professor Oyewale Tomori of Nigeria, will present keynote speeches on Nov. 19 and 20, respectively. While Udwadia is a passionate advocate for better treatments for the extremely-drug-resistant (XDR) Tuberculosis patients he encounters in his practice; Tomori is is fervent in urging African countries to invest in health care infrastructure that will enable them to better contain future outbreaks.

Several scholars from around the world, including Dr Gustavo Dayan at Sanofi-Pasteur, Canada; and Professor Subhash Vasudevan , Singapore, will be addressing the vaccine and therapeutic strategies at the symposium and lead various sessions.

WHAT: Infectious Diseases: Global Public-Health Challenges of the Next Decade, the 11th annual International Consortium on Anti-Virals (ICAV) symposium.
For complete program, click here.

Executive Learning Centre, Seymour Schulich School of Business, York University, Keele Campus (Building number 94 on map)

Tuesday, November 18 to Thursday, November 20, 2014.

Note: Organizers and speakers are available for media interviews

York University is helping to shape the global thinkers and thinking that will define tomorrow. York U’s unwavering commitment to excellence reflects a rich diversity of perspectives and a strong sense of social responsibility that sets us apart. A York U degree empowers graduates to thrive in the world and achieve their life goals through a rigorous academic foundation balanced by real-world experiential education. As a globally recognized research centre, York U is fully engaged in the critical discussions that lead to innovative solutions to the most pressing local and global social challenges. York U’s 11 faculties and 28 research centres are thinking bigger, broader and more globally, partnering with 288 leading universities worldwide. York U's community is strong − 55,000 students, 7,000 faculty and staff, and more than 250,000 alumni.

Consortium on Anti-Virals (ICAV) / Consortium International sur les Thérapies Antivirales (CITAV) is a Canadian not-for-profit drug development company founded in 2004 to discover and develop novel anti-viral therapies for neglected and emerging diseases, and to ensure their global accessibility to all those in need.

Media Contacts:
Gloria Suhasini, York University Media Relations, 416 736 2100 ext. 22094, suhasini@yorku.ca
Christine Hodge, ICAV, 416-864-9911 or cchodge@rogers.com