The year 2018 has been exceptional in several ways. It was marked by the celebration of the 130th anniversary of the Institut Pasteur and the arrival of a new President. The adoption of its 2019-2023 Strategic Plan offers a new ambition for the institute, and recalls that human health is at the heart of its mission.
"The Institut Pasteur in 2018" video. Copyright: Institut Pasteur / La Netscouade.
“2018 was a successful year, with more than 1,100 scientific publications and several major awards for our scientists”, said Stewart Cole, President of the Institut Pasteur, in the 2018 Annual Report. We can also mention the action of the foundation in the field of public health, the 14 National Reference Centers (CNRs) and 6 WHO Collaborating Centers continued to strive daily to tackle and control communicable diseases. For example, the Escherichia coli, Shigella and Salmonella CNR worked during the infant Salmonella outbreak.
2018, between History and modernity
Several other events have marked the 130th anniversary year of the Institut Pasteur. The exhibition "Pasteur l’expérimentateur" at the Palais de la Découverte in Paris (180,000 visitors) testified to the public interest for Louis Pasteur and the institute he founded. On the Institut Pasteur campus, Titan KriosTM, the most powerful microscope in the world, and the Omics building dedicated to computational biology were inaugurated. Finally, an international symposium on "Global Health", under the patronage of the President of the Republic, brought together prestigious personalities to close the celebrations.
A strategic plan 2019-2023
President of the Institut Pasteur since January 1, 2018, Pr Stewart Cole has initiated the development of a strategic plan to "increase the impact of research on health". Emerging infectious diseases, antimicrobial resistance, brain connectivity and neurodegenerative diseases are the three scientific priorities of this plan. Two concerted actions also include strengthening cancer research and vaccine research at the Institut Pasteur.
Some advances in research in 2018
Significant scientific progress has been made in 2018 by researchers at the Institut Pasteur.
- Hepatitis C: a new diagnostic test has been developed, it is fast, reliable, point-of-care.
- Meningococcal meningitis: stomach pain has been identified as a warning sign that should alert, along with high temperature, vomiting and a stiff neck.
- Cancers: the action of immune cells in response to the proliferation of cancer cells was captured in vivo video, revealing how the immune system exerts pressure on the genetic diversity of cancer cells.
- AIDS: as antiretroviral therapy is unable to eliminate viral reservoirs lurking in immune cells, new inhibitors are able to destroy them.
- Antibiotic resistance: in a European study, more than 6,000 genes for antibiotic resistance have been discovered in the gut microbiota.
- Malnutriton: the Afribiota project, conducted in the Institut Pasteur International Network (Paris, Madagascar and Bangui), revealed the presence in the gut of a microbial signature of chronic malnutrition, which affects one in four children under 5 years old in the world.