This site hopes to bring together these different research communities and provide an open access forum for the sharing of ideas, dissemination of information and facilitating the work of the research community working in the area of rapidly emerging public health problems. There will be individual sites linked through the www.globalepidemicresearch.org site and will include partners from each of the above communities.
The aim is to change the approach to global collaborative clinical research during epidemics and other rapidly emerging public health threats in order to quickly generate new knowledge, maximize the clinical information available to everyone, and thereby save lives.
A key lesson from a series of recent outbreaks of emerging pathogens of global public health importance including SARS-CoV, highly pathogenic avian influenza A (H5N1) virus, Nipah virus and the 2009 H1N1 virus pandemic was that mounting clinical research in response to a rapidly emerging infectious disease is extremely challenging and often delayed. We currently have no framework for ensuring research is built into epidemic responses and in fact our present research culture often prevents against a rapid response. Furthermore, from recent epidemics no integrated analyses exist of combined microbiological/virological, immunological, clinical, epidemiological, and genetic data for comprehensive assessment of host-emerging pathogen interactions that can inform prevention and control activities, and guide clinical management.
The aim is to not only to facilitate global clinical research in epidemics and emergencies in a timely, efficient, targeted and coordinated manner in order to maximize the information from studies and thereby save lives but also to change the approach to international collaborative clinical research during epidemics and rapidly emerging public health threats. We hope this site will establish a new paradigm for global collaborative clinical research through open access linked with data and sample sharing matched by sharing in the benefits of the research. If successful, we hope that this would become an indispensible component of the global research landscape.
The site will also include a central resource of research activities that are ongoing globally, discussion blogs and open workspaces for Wiki-style sharing of research projects and ideas. There will be the possibility of access to “Closed Spaces” to allow individual working groups to share protocols or resources within their teams.
The site will be part of the www.theglobalhealthnetwork.org site and users of the site will automatically link to all the resources available through that site.
The following groups are actively linked with the initial setting up of the www.globalepidemicresearch.org site
1. CERT-CUHK-Oxford University Centre for Disaster and Medical Humantitarian Response http://ccouc.org/
2. International Forum for Acute Care Trialists INFACT http://www.infactglobal.org/
3. International Severe Acute Respiratory Infection Consortium - ISARIC http://www.isaric.org/