World Zoonoses Day: World Zoonoses Day takes place on 6 July each year.
- World Zoonoses Day commemorates the work of French Biologist Louis Pasteur, who successfully administered the first-ever vaccine against rabies, a zoonotic disease, on 6 July 1885.
- The day presents an opportunity to educate the masses and raise awareness of diseases that can spread between animals and people.
- In Zoonoses the first infected human transmits the infectious agent to at least one other human, who, in turn, infects others.
The theme of World Zoonoses Day 2021:
- The theme of World Zoonoses Day 2021 is “Let’s Break the Chain of Zoonotic Transmission.”
- Louis Pasteur administered the first-ever vaccine to Joseph Meister, who was mauled by a rabid dog.
- The jab was given on 6 July 1885.
- Since then, the day is remembered to thank the creator of the first-ever vaccine.
Significance during pandemic times:
- The significance of the day is perhaps now far greater than ever before due to the ongoing pandemic.
- A new report titled “Preventing the Next Pandemic: Zoonotic diseases and how to break the chain of transmission” was launched on World Zoonoses Day, 2020.
- The report was created by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI).
- The report warned that further outbreaks will emerge unless governments around the world take measures to prevent zoonotic diseases from infecting the human population.
- Besides warning governments about future pandemics, it also identifies trends driving the increasing emergence of zoonotic diseases in the world.
- In addition, the report set out ten recommendations to prevent future pandemics.
Some of the recommendations were as follows:
- Raising awareness of zoonotic diseases
- Improving cost-benefit analyses of interventions to include full-cost accounting of societal impacts of disease
- Improving biosecurity and control, identifying key drivers of emerging diseases in animal husbandry, and encouraging proven management and zoonotic disease control measures
- Strengthening monitoring and regulation practices associated with zoonotic diseases, including food systems
- Operationalizing the One Health approach in land-use and sustainable development planning, implementation, and monitoring, among other fields.
- Zoonoses are infectious diseases (viruses, bacteria, and parasites) that can be spread from animals to humans, and vice versa.
- Zoonotic Diseases are caused by viruses, bacteria, fungus, parasites, and Mosquitos.
- Zoonoses may propagate by direct interaction with animals, or indirectly, by vectors, or by food.
- Example: Tick-borne encephalitis and borreliosis are very popular zoonotic diseases.
- Yet even zoonoses include other foodborne infectious diseases such as salmonella, yersinia, EHEC, botulism, or campylobacter.
Common zoonotic disease:
- The most common zoonotic diseases are Plague, Tuberculosis, Cat Scratch Fever, Tick Paralysis, Hantavirus, Ringworm, Salmonellosis, Leptospirosis, Lyme disease, Cryptosporidium infection, Roundworms, Hookworms, Campylobacter infection, Giardia infection, Scabies, Harvest mites, Rabies, etc.
How to avoid zoonotic diseases?
- Hand and face hygiene, Cover your face while traveling in crowded places, and sanitize your hands regularly.
- Keep your place clean and hygienic.
- Don’t eat uncooked food.
- If you have animals then take care of them, get their routine check-up regularly.
About Louis Pasteur:
- Louis Pasteur ForMemRS (27 December 1822 – 28 September 1895)) was a French chemist and microbiologist renowned for his discoveries of the principles of vaccination, microbial fermentation, and pasteurization.
- His research in chemistry led to remarkable breakthroughs in the understanding of the causes and preventions of diseases, which laid down the foundations of hygiene, public health, and much of modern medicine.
- His works are credited with saving millions of lives through the development of vaccines for rabies and anthrax.
- He is regarded as one of the founders of modern bacteriology and has been honoured as the “father of bacteriology” and as the “father of microbiology” together with Robert Koch, and the latter epithet also attributed to Antonie van Leeuwenhoek.