Washington University School of Medicine is one of 10 sites and a coordinating center forming the Centers for Research in Emerging Infectious Diseases, funded by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The centers are a coordinated network with collaborators in different regions across the globe where emerging and re-emerging infectious disease outbreaks have proven likely to occur.
Multidisciplinary teams of investigators will conduct surveillance of potential sources of new diseases and the local populations at risk of infection. The researchers will study transmission, disease progression, and immunologic responses in the host, and will develop diagnostic tests and animal models of the new diseases for improved detection of important emerging pathogens and the methods by which they spread.
Such information could help predict which new infectious diseases are at highest risk of reaching pandemic status and aid in efforts to understand the new disease and prevent its spread.