WHO / SAGO NOVEL PATHOGENS ORIGINS REPORT

Preview Language:   Original
09-Jun-2022 00:05:13
The first preliminary report from the Scientific Advisory Group for the Origins of Novel Pathogens (SAGO) to WHO is published today. WHO

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STORY: WHO / SAGO NOVEL PATHOGENS ORIGINS REPORT
TRT:5:13
SOURCE: WHO
RESTRICTIONS: NONE
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / NATS

DATELINE: 02 JUNE 2022, GENEVA, SWITZERLAND

SHOTLIST:


1.Various shots, exterior, WHO
2.SOUNDBITE (English) Prof Marietjie Venter, Chair of the Scientific Advisory Group for the Origins of Novel Pathogens:
“The SAGO met for the first time in November and we had to introduce ourselves to each other and get to know the group a little bit. It's a group of experts that consist of people from various different fields. It includes molecular biologists, veterinarians, clinical doctors, people with expertise in ecology. And from there, we basically started to look at a framework. So, we put a framework together that we will use for studying any emerging pathogen. So, any novel pathogen that emerge, we will then apply these different things or different structures to and discuss how it could possibly have emerged and where did come from.”
3. Various shots, exterior, WHO
4. SOUNDBITE (English) Dr Maria Van Kerkhove, SAGO Secretariat:
“The SAGO has just issued their first preliminary report to WHO and we've made that publicly available. The report illustrates the ongoing work of this group. The SAGO’s work has really only just begun within the report itself. They're focusing on a couple of things. First, is this global framework. How do we outline how each and every time there's the emergence of these types of pathogens? What are the studies that need to be done each and every time this happens?”
5. Various shots, exterior, WHO
6. SOUNDBITE (English) Jean-Claude Manuguerra, Vice-Chair of the Scientific Advisory Group for the Origins of Novel Pathogens:
“When there's an outbreak, the urgency is to stop the outbreak as soon as possible, because the sooner the better for everything and especially for controlling outbreaks. However, the control of the outbreak doesn't mean that you shouldn't do other investigation, such as finding where the virus comes from. What is the origin of the pathogen? And this should be done as soon as possible, at the same time as the outbreak should be controlled. It's not incompatible.“
7. Wide shot, exterior, WHO
8. SOUNDBITE (English) Prof Marietjie Venter, Chair of the Scientific Advisory Group for the Origins of Novel Pathogens:
“The reason for looking at the origin of a pathogen is not only to determine where it initially comes from, because sometimes it's not possible to really find it. But it's also whether it's going to keep emerging. Will it keep coming out from, for example, from an animal host or will it keep spilling over, does any new variants emerge? As the pandemic progressed, we know that there was a couple of new variants that came along. Where do they come from? And so the SAGO really puts together this group of experts that have a lot of experience in investigating outbreaks and emerging diseases and basically advise WHO which studies should be done when a new pathogen emerged and how, you know, how can we rapidly get enough data to actually find the origins if possible?”
9. Various shots, exterior, WHO
10. SOUNDBITE (English) Dr Maria Van Kerkhove, SAGO Secretariat:
“They are also tasked to look at understanding the origins of the COVID 19 pandemic? So, they've issued some preliminary recommendations to outline studies that need to be conducted so that we have the data, we have better knowledge about what may have happened in the beginning of this pandemic. And what you can see in the report is that they really outline that there's a lot more work that needs to be done in China and elsewhere.”
11. Various shots, exterior, WHO
12. SOUNDBITE (English) Dr Maria Van Kerkhove, SAGO Secretariat:
“There's other studies that are in there that are looking at environmental samples, anthropological studies to understand behaviors and understanding risk patterns. And there are studies that look at breaches in biosafety and biosecurity or potential breaches in biosafety and biosecurity, because a lot of these pathogens are being worked on in labs around the world. There are many biosafety biosecurity procedures in place, but what this group will look at is, was there a potential that there was a breach in some of these procedures which could potentially lead to infection in humans?”
13. Wide shot, exterior, WHO
14. SOUNDBITE (English) Prof Marietjie Venter, Chair of the Scientific Advisory Group for the Origins of Novel Pathogens:
“So, it's always difficult to find the origin of a new pathogen. If you don't have the original case and you don't know where it's pulled over from, it remains difficult. But it's important that we know where to look. We have a lot more new clues. We know about a lot of different species that can be infected now that we didn't know of in the beginning. And we need to find out where these animals that were at the wet markets in China came from.”
15. Wide shot, exterior, WHO
16. SOUNDBITE (English) Jean-Claude Manuguerra, Vice-Chair of the Scientific Advisory Group for the Origins of Novel Pathogens:
“We know that maybe in the world there are some samples that we missed in China, but also in other places around China or maybe distant of China. And maybe one day we're going to be lucky and we're going to have the missing link. You know, it took ages, years for HIV to trace where it came from and when it entered the human population. And then we have to be patient and we need a lot of tenacity, but I think that if we do if we do persist, then we're going to find somewhere some clues about the origin.”
17.Wide shot, exterior, WHO

STORYLINE:

The first preliminary report from the Scientific Advisory Group for the Origins of Novel Pathogens (SAGO) to WHO is published today (09 Jun).

It represents ongoing work of the SAGO and represents their work that is in progress. Further reports by the SAGO will be provided as discussions continue.

This first report focuses on providing initial recommendations for the development of a global framework to study emerging and re-emerging pathogens of pandemic potential and preliminary recommendations on urgent studies needed to better understand the origins of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The report provides background information about the formation and meetings of the SAGO since it was established on 13 October 2021, including an overview of some of the scientific discussions members have had in plenary and as part of technical working groups of the SAGO. The second version of the report includes a timeline, letters to WHO from the SAGO, and clarifications requested by WHO. The SAGO emphasizes that its work has only just begun.

The SAGO is a scientific advisory group and is firmly focused on science and public health. It is operating under the agreed terms of reference and will continue to fulfil the objectives outlined therein. This report highlights important elements that will need to be considered as part of a global framework to inform the actions needed each time an emerging or re-emerging pathogen is identified and causes human infections. The SAGO will continue to discuss and provide detailed recommendations towards the development of the global framework.

The SAGO advises the Secretariat on technical and scientific considerations regarding emerging and re-emerging pathogens. It is composed of experts acting in a personal capacity. It is established in accordance with the WHO Regulations for Study and Scientific Groups, Collaborating Institutions and Other Mechanisms of Collaboration.
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