The Second General Assembly Meeting of the REspiratory Syncytial virus Consortium in EUrope (RESCEU) took place on 21-22 June at St Anne’s College in Oxford, bringing together about 100 participants from the 18 project’s partners and representatives from all the work packages. Affiliated Partners representatives, RESCEU Advisory Boards members and other relevant stakeholders, such as the World Health Organization, were also invited to attend and provide their perspective on the project.
RESCEU aims to develop robust evidence on RSV disease burden and economic impact and provide infrastructure to perform future pivotal trials for RSV vaccines and therapeutics. In its effort to tackle the RSV burden, RESCEU is aiming to create a sustainable Europe-wide multidisciplinary, multi-stakeholder community from academia, public health, scientific societies, patient organisations, regulatory agencies and industry.
The meeting was a unique chance for a face to face discussions within and across WPs, while also providing the stage for brainstorming sessions and networking among participants. It was encouraging to see the progress made in all Work Packages, and the degree of coordination amongst partner organisations across a very large, multi-disciplinary project team.
The plenary assembly on June 21st and 22nd was preceded by a pre-meeting day, intended to provide representatives from each WP and WP Leaders with a space for internal face to face meetings.
The first day started with a keynote speech from Dr. Pasi Penttinen, representing the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) as member of the RESCEU International Scientific Advisory Group (ISAG). The speech, entitled Surveillance of respiratory viruses at EU level. Perspective from ECDC, was followed by a focus on RESCEU interaction with regulators by Francesca Rocchi (PENTA Foundation) and two lectures on RSV burden of disease and recent developments hold by Ting Shi, University of Edinburgh and Nienke Scheltema, from the University Medial Centre of Utrecht, both public partners of the RESCEU Consortium. The focus during the day was WPs’ presentations providing a state of play and highlights on WPs’ achievements and upcoming work for the near future.
The second day focused on transversal aspects, with the project management presentation, an interactive session with the three members of the Patient Advisory Board Members stressing the importance of generating awareness on what RSV is, and an open discussion on outreach and dissemination. During the last day Dr. Siddhivinayak Hirve from WHO also updated the audience on WHO Global RSV Surveillance.
Several posters where displayed on the work done in different WPs. The attendees could interact with the authors during the lunch breaks. Overall it was an energising gathering which proved the good work done so far and the commitment of all project participants, Affiliated Partners and advisors.
The next RESCEU General Assembly Meeting will take place on 19-20-21 June 2019 in Utrecht.
More information on RESCEU at http://resc-eu.org