The science behind Ebola

Friday, September 26, 2014

Speakers from left to right, Marc Aucoin, Shannon Majowicz, Christine Dupont and host Josh Neufeld The current Ebola outbreaks in Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia have raised questions and concerns about the disease within our local community.

Last Wednesday night, the Faculties of Science, Applied Health Science and Engineering jointly hosted a public lecture to discuss the evolution, epidemiology and treatment of the Ebola virus.  

The sold-out event attracted a crowd of more than 500 attendees, which included students, staff, faculty and members of the UWaterloo community. The night began with engaging and informative presentations from lecturer Christine Dupont, of the Department of Biology, Professor Shannon Majowicz of the School of Public Health and Health Systems and Professor Marc Aucoin of the Department of Chemical Engineering. A lively question and answer period followed, allowing the audience to raise concerns and generate discussion.

The lecture highlighted the biological origins of the Ebola virus and revealed a larger underlying picture about the state of our global healthcare system.

Ebola affects the great apes but they are not the natural reservoir for the virus, just a source. In order to eradicate Ebola, we need to first uncover the reservoir," said Dupont.

packed audience in theatre for ebola lectureThrough events like these, the University of Waterloo aims to educate and inform the local community, sharing our knowledge on topics affecting the world.

We hope that everyone who attended found the event enjoyable and learned something new. For those who were unable to attend, you can view the entire lecture on the official University of Waterloo YouTube account

A special thanks to Professor George Dixon, Vice-President of University Research, for opening the event and Professor Josh Neufeld from the Department of Biology in the Faculty of Science for hosting and planning the evening.

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