2020 Pre-Meeting Courses - Virtual

The Pre-Meeting courses will be online this year. More information on course agenda and speaker information coming soon.

Clinical Pre-Meeting Course:
Where Flatworms Roam: Controversies and Updates in Management of Neurocysticercosis and Echinococcus
Course Co-chairs: Christina Coyle, MD and Michael Libman, MD

This one-day session will go beyond the basics of the diagnosis, imaging and management of both cestodes and larval cestodes. Expert speakers will present updates and explore controversies in diagnosis and management, unusual manifestations and imaging challenges. Imaging presentations will focus on understanding the differential diagnosis of suspicious lesions. Uncommon cestode infections also will be discussed, including alveolar hydatidosis, sparganosis and coenurosis. Sessions will be highly interactive with opportunities for active audience participation and discussion with the experts. 

Global Health Pre-Meeting Course:
Modeling for Disease Outbreaks – Practical Approaches to Understanding, Implementing and Using Models

Course Co-chairs: Kathryn Anderson, MD, PhD, MSPH and Julie Pavlin, MD, PhD, MPH, FASTMH

The COVID-19 outbreak has demonstrated to the world again how rapidly a disease can move through populations, spread exponentially in numbers and locations, and impact transportation, economies and other important and significant aspects of life. The ability to plan and implement an effective response depends on predicting as accurately as possible who, where, how many and when cases will occur, with limited information. With this knowledge, responders can allocate resources to maximum benefit and enact the best preventive, containment and mitigation measures. This prediction requires accurate data, an understanding of pathogen transmission dynamics, the context in which the disease is transmitted, and mathematical modeling. Modeling is an essential tool in the study of infectious disease epidemiology, which allows informed policymaking, nowcasting and forecasting of epidemics, and real-time risk assessments. This pre-meeting course will provide instruction to first-time or introductory modelers in: 1) key concepts of infectious disease modeling; 2) understanding the strengths and limitations of modeling in order to critically review modeling results; 3) providing a list of resources, including modelers and open source modeling programs; and 4) a practical session to provide hands-on experience implementing, running and using models (bring your computers!).

Medical Entomology Pre-Meeting Course:
Vector-Borne Disease Risk and Prevention for the Clinician

Course Co-chairs: Christopher Barker, PhD and Laura Harrington, PhD

Blood-sucking insects and ticks transmit some of the most devastating, yet, in many cases, preventable human diseases including malaria, dengue, chikungunya, Zika, Lyme disease, leishmaniasis and Chagas disease. In this course, we will review the basic biology of major arthropod vectors; discuss the geographic and behavioral risks posed by vector-borne diseases; and review preventive options, including personal protection and environmental control methods. The course is designed to help medical professionals advise their patients about the risks and prevention measures against biting insects and ticks.

Parasitology Pre-Meeting Course: The Science of Developing Vaccines to Prevent Diseases Caused by Parasites: From Discovery to Translation to the First Clinical Trials
Couse Co-chairs: John Adams, PhD, FASTMH and Stephen Hoffman, MD, DTMH, FASTMH

There is no vaccine for a human parasitic infection that has marketing authorization (licensure) anywhere in the world. However, we are on the verge of licensed vaccines for malaria, and are making enormous progress for diseases caused by other protozoans like leishmaniasis and helminths like hookworm. A distinguished international faculty from the biotechnology industry and academia will communicate their experience and insights regarding how to approach successful development of vaccines against parasites, including identification of the immunological mechanisms of protection and the antigenic targets of protective humoral and cellular immune responses, the construction of vaccine delivery systems (recombinant proteins, recombinant viruses, DNA and mRNA, whole parasites and genetically altered parasites), and establishing and using functional assays to assess protection in vitro and in animal models. They also will discuss strategies for identifying and capturing intellectual property, achieving regulatory approval for phase 1-3 clinical trials and translating from the laboratory to the clinic.