Ebola hemorrhagic fever (EHF) outbreak in Guinea – impact on wildlife?
A team of interdisciplinary scientists arrived in Guinea April 2nd 2014 to investigate a possible epidemic of Ebola hemorrhagic fever (EHF) amongst wildlife in the region were human cases occurred. In a joint mission between the Wild Chimpanzee Foundation – Guinea and Côte d’Ivoire (WCF), the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), the Max-Planck-Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology (MPI-EVA), the Institute of Tropical Medicine and International Health (ITMIH) of Charité – University Medicine Berlin, and the National Laboratory for Agricultural Development (LANADA, Côte d’Ivoire), the team will systematically monitor wildlife around the outbreak areas. Previous human outbreaks have been associated with massive wildlife die offs (especially great apes and duikers). Besides investigating the impact of the current EHF outbreak on wildlife populations, identification of a possible epidemic in wildlife might help to predict the risk for virus transmission to humans. The team will record any animal carcass and take samples for laboratory confirmation and further analyses. Fruit bats are currently the best suspects for being the animal reservoir of Ebola virus. In parallel to wildlife monitoring the team will catch fruit bats and take samples to further elucidate this question.
The Robert Koch Institute has renamed many Divisions and Departments and made further structural adaptations. The new designations are to better reflect the current contents of the tasks of the different units.
The Robert Koch Institute offers international courses and workshops on biological hazards.
The Robert Koch Institute participates in large European research projects and co-operations in the fields of prevention of infections as well as health monitoring, for example REACT or EHES.
The RKI provides online information on measles.