Institut Pasteur’s Global Health Mastery in Salzburg

Jun 7, 2024

It is no news that the OMI is tremendously appreciative for all the support from leading institutions worldwide, and we are proud to have counted on the Institut Pasteur once more this year, this time in Salzburg! Having partnered with us in Mexico earlier this year for the Neurological and Sensory Disorders seminar, this week’s seminar in Salzburg focused on Viruses, Liver and Cancers.

Institut Pasteur’s presence and impact in global health development is one of a kind, and it connects deeply with OMI’s core values and mission of promoting quality medical education and research. Being the home institution of ten Nobel Prize winners since the early twentieth century, Institut Pasteur’s mastery in medical research and development is unique.

This week in Salzburg, we were privileged to host twelve distinguished professionals from multiple European nations. Furthermore, we were honored to have Monica Sala, the director of Institut Pasteur education division, with us during the week as the cherry on top of a perfect cake.

Faculty from leading institutions gathered along with fellows from twenty three different countries and four separate continents: Europe, Africa, Latin America, and Asia. The week was a junction with the OMI and the Institut Pasteur International Network, representing scientists from top educational facilities in countries such as Niger, Cameroon, Central African Republic, and more. The seminar beautifully conveyed what we are most proud of: Promoting in person quality education and networking without borders.

To capture the essence of such a significantly diverse group, the faculty brilliantly scheduled five round-table talks, one for each seminar day after all didactic lectures. This allowed fellows and faculty to have open discussions on the days’ topics, and exchange experiences from their home countries.

Outlining the course topics, a special focus was laid on the epidemiology, natural history, and treatment of HDV and HBV, genomic aspects of viral hepatocarcinogenesis, the treatment of HCC, as well as effects of immune responses in infections and cancer. Additionally, clinical trends and innovations in the treatment of hepatocellular carcinoma, pediatric vaccines for Intratumoral Immunotherapy, and many more extremely relevant topics were covered by the faculty.

Our course director, Jean-Pierre Vartanian, Head of the Department of Virology and Head of the Virus and Cellular Stress Unit at the Institut Pasteur states that “This week’s course gathered highly committed researchers to share their knowledge with colleagues from all over the world.”

Indeed, Dr. Vartanian was joined by no less than eleven illustriously committed faculty members from numerous renowned institutions, apart from Institut Pasteur lecturers from France and Italy: Dr. Vicenzo Barnaba, Honorary Professor at the Institut Pasteur in Italy; Dr. Paul Dény, Professor at the Sorbonne University in Paris; Dr. Esteban Domingo, Honorary Professor at the Severo Ochoa Molecular Biology Center, Autonomous University of Madrid; Dr. Dominique Franco, Emeritus Professor of Surgery at the Institut Pasteur in France; Dr. Joaquim Lupberger, Research Director at the Institute for Translational Medicine and Liver Disease; Dr. Marie-Louise Michele, Former Director of the Pathogenesis of Hepatitis B Virus Laboratory of the department of Virology, Institut Pasteur in France; Dr. Jean-Christophe Pagès, Professor of Cell-Biology at the Purpan University Hospital in Tulouse; Dr. Pascal Pineau, Research Director at the Nuclear Organization and Oncogenesis Unit of Institut Pasteur; Dr. Olivier Rosmorduc, Professor in Hepatology and Gastroenterology at the Paris-Saclay University; Dr. Frédéric Tangy, Director of Research of the French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) at the Institut Pasteur; and Dr. Yu Wei of the Department of Virology at the Institut Pasteur in Paris.

Dr. Vartanian summarizes the power of such mastery gathered in one place: “The collaboration between the OMI and Institut Pasteur is totally unique. We share a common vision: To provide knowledge and enthusiasm for learning to all healthcare professionals wishing to improve their care, as well as to students wishing to perfect their skills in the research areas of their choice. Since the introduction of the first “Technical Microbiology” course in 1889, education has been a priority at the Institut Pasteur, and researchers and physicians have never ceased to share their knowledge with students. The association between the OMI and the Institut Pasteur will remain an inexhaustible source of richness and transmission of knowledge for a long time.”

During the round table, we had an amazing discussion about vaccines with the professors, and I had an opportunity to ask some important questions related to my PhD research.
Vasileios Gouzouasis

OMI fellow from Greece

This course allowed me to understand the scientific advances in the field of viral hepatitis, HCC, and vaccination. It will improve my research career and help to apply the knowledge in my home country, where there is serious lack of expertise on viral hepatitis and hepatocellular cancer.
Adamou Lagare

OMI fellow from Niger

Together with fellows from the Ivory Coast, Cameroon, Malawi, and Niger, we agreed to set up regional research projects, upon returning home. The initiative for this work was encouraged by professors Paul Dény and Pascal Pineau, who have carried out a lot of work on hepatitis.
Marina Prisca De Marguerite Nombot Yazenguet

OMI fellow from Central African Republic

Every faculty member demonstrated exceptional engagement and expertise. As an epidemiologist and an infectious diseases resident, I found these discussions highly relevant to my daily practice.
Goulia Ohan

OMI fellow from Armenia

I was excited about the lecture of Dr. Jean-Christophe Pagès on Viral Hepatocarcinogenesis, Viruses, Immunity, and Cell Stress. The lecture met my expectations regarding the role of viruses in modulating the immunity of the host and leading to hepatocarcinogenesis.
Chaimaa Zerrad

OMI fellow from Morocco

We are thankful for Institut Pasteur and for the time donated from each of the twelve master minds present at the seminar. The knowledge shared during the week will undoubtedly spread through uncountable lives by each fellow’s practice.