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Royal Society 2021 Africa Prize lecture from Professor George Warimwe. More than 70% of emerging infectious diseases (including viruses) are zoonotic, meaning they are acquired from animals, with some causing serious illness and death in humans as well as the animal host. But, what if we could immunise both humans and animals with the same vaccine?

The development and deployment of vaccines against emerging infectious diseases is a priority for global health security. More than 70% of these infectious diseases are zoonotic, meaning they are acquired from animals, with some causing serious illness and death in humans as well as the respective animal host. Despite this, the study of host-pathogen interactions that underlie disease pathogenesis and the mechanisms through which immunity is acquired are often done in medical and veterinary ‘silos’, with little interaction between the two. A ‘one health’ approach that integrates the scientific insights from veterinary and human studies may accelerate progress in the design and development of countermeasures against zoonotic diseases.

Rift Valley Fever, a zoonotic disease that causes epidemics in Africa, is among a shortlist of diseases prioritised by the World Health Organization for urgent development of vaccines. In this talk, Professor George Warimwe will discuss his ‘one health vaccinology’ approach to developing a single Rift Valley Fever vaccine suitable for human and livestock use.

Professor Warimwe's talk is followed by a Q&A chaired by Sir Jeremy James Farrar OBE FRS FMedSci.

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