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Pandemic Prediction and Prevention

Envisioning an aspirational destination: A world where we accurately foresee pandemics and proactively minimize their impact.

Photo from Unsplash.

Our mission is to forecast and control future viral pandemics by addressing the grand challenge of uncovering the genetic, molecular, cellular, and chemical rules of life underlying virus-host interactions through community-based and ethically grounded research.

We seek to educate and train a new generation of scientists with transformative technical and professional skills to form convergent teams that can protect and empower humans by anticipating future outbreaks and preventing them from becoming pandemics. 

Skill-building practices in connection, communication, and collaboration will prepare team members for effective engagement with communities. 

Community members will play an integral role in designing and implementing policy and communication strategies.

In the News

The Project

Most emerging human viral diseases are zoonotic (originating from animals). When zoonotic events result in pandemics, their medical and societal consequences are immense. Notably, COVID-19 has led to global disruption of human life, highlighting several important scientific, societal, and ethical challenges.

  1. It is difficult to predict a zoonotic emergence by surveilling the large number of viruses that infect domestic and wild animals.
  2. Many emerging viruses cannot be propagated efficiently in standard cell culture systems.
  3. Only a few inexpensive and effective drugs have been developed to curb or prevent viral infections that are emerging threats.
  4. The dominant mode of transmission may not be readily apparent, especially for emerging viruses.
  5. Clear, consistent, and trustworthy communication, along with community-led actions, are essential components of pandemic science, as evidenced by the public response to messaging from medical and government authorities during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Research Team

Our team will establish a nationally prominent center of excellence on PPP with a focus on forecasting and controlling future global viral pandemics. The research, education, and outreach activities of the DA will interweave active consideration and inclusion of ethical, social, and policy consequences of this research to build trust with the communities whom we seek to serve. 


Contact T. M. Murali