On the 9th of June, 2020, the Scientific Virology Council of the International Association of the Academies of Sciences (IAAS) held a constitutive meeting via video conference. The participants were leading Belarusian and foreign scientists from 10 countries, including the Russian Federation, the People's Republic of China, Armenia, Georgia, Kirghizia, Uzbekistan, Ukraine, Tadzhikistan and Montenegro.
Opening the meeting, Petr Vityaz, the Deputy Head of the International Association of the Academies of Sciences, academician of the NASB, said: “Under the COVID-19 pandemic, it is of crucial importance to combine efforts of scientists and experts from all countries in order to overcome its dire consequences, prevent new cases and deaths”. The participants of the meeting actively supported the initiative of the NAS of Belarus to create the Scientific Virology Council and elect co-chairpersons: Alexander Kilchevsky, the Deputy Chairman of the NASB Presidium, Academician, Vitaly Zverev, the Research Advisor of the Scientific Research Institute of Vaccines and Serums n.a. I. Mechnikov, and Gao Fu, the Director of the Chinese Centre for Disease Control and Prevention.
The purpose of creation of the new Scientific Virology Council is to organize and implement collaborative research, to provide scientific investigation of developments in this field of science. The main tasks include studying and forecasting the most important trends in development of this sector, organization of scientific activities, a systematic analysis of achievements in this scientific field and implementation of evidence-based efficient technologies of virus infectious disease prevention.
The constitutive meeting involved discussion of main focus areas of the Scientific Council, including joint fundamental and applied research, among other things, within a framework of the competition of international scientific projects of the Belarusian Republican Foundation for Fundamental Research of the NASB, training of specialists in virology, perspectives of a new vaccine introduction and urgency of viral infection prevention, use of domestic LED ultraviolet lamps for minimization of infection complications in high-risk groups. The tasks and organizational and technical aspects of the Council activities for the short-term were determined.