HSP played a leading role in the annual ASM Biothreats meeting, February 12-14, 2018, in Baltimore, Maryland. As Chair of the Program Committee, Jason E. Rao, the Executive Director of HSP, completely revamped the meeting by expanding the scope to five tracks this year: High consequence pathogen research, Policy, Biological threat reduction, Product development, and Student/early career. Keynote sessions featured leading experts in diverse areas: Robert Kadlec, Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services; Ilaria Capua, Director, One Health Center of Excellence at the University of Florida; and Richard Harris, Science Desk Correspondent, NPR. With support from Open Philanthropy, a special dinner session on the topic of “Preparing for Biological Catastrophe: Learning from History, Predicting the Future,” featured a discussion on the 1918 Pandemic Flu and current efforts by the Intelligence Advanced Research Activity (IARPA). The U.S. Department of Defense’s Cooperative Biosecurity Engagement Program (CBEP) supported the participation of more than 60 scientists from the developing world working in the areas of high consequence pathogen research, biosurveillance, and biosecurity. From the pre-conference symposium for early career scientists to the poster sessions showcasing the latest science from across the world, to the exhibit floor, the energy and enthusiasm was palpable.
HSP partners from Pakistan, including HSP Consultant, Samreen Sarwar and HSP Associate, Dr. Saeed Khan presented posters at the meeting. HSP staff also met with partners from the National Institute of Health of the Philippines.
Left: HSP Consultant and Fellow, Samreen Sarwar presenting a poster titled, “Laboratory Biosafety Practices in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan: The Current Situation.”
Right: HSP partner, Dr. Saeed Khan presenting a poster titled, “Medical Plants of Ethiopian origin effective candidate for Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA).”