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Source: Diario Libre

The Universidad Iberoamericana (UNIBE) has started a Molecular Biology laboratory and the National Observatory of Pandemics and Emerging Pathogens, through its Dean of Research and Innovation and the Institute of Tropical Medicine and Global Health (IMTSAG).

The spaces were left in operation after the signing an agreement between the Ministry of Economy, Planning and Development (MEPyD) and the National Health Service with the higher education center, reported Abraham Hazoury, president of the university’s Governing Council.

“We have started, with the auspices of the Dominican Government and Seeding Labs, the Molecular Biology laboratory to process PCR tests of suspected cases of SARS-CoV-2 infection, as a forceful response to the national emergency in which the country is and as a contribution of this university to our society ”, he expressed in a press release supplied to this newsroom.

He assured that they have installed more than six nucleic acid extraction and amplification machines and, with it, the possibility of giving a joint response to the State to face the need for increased diagnostic capabilities.

“This capacity is increased by a second endowment made by Seeding Labs to this house of high studies, that has stood out for its research in the health sciences,” he said.

“Having these teams implies a qualitative leap in basic science research that can be carried out in the Dominican Republic, allowing the isolation and molecular analysis processes to be automated, positioning the institute at the forefront of emerging pathogen studies, such as SARS. -CoV-2, virus that causes COVID-19, “said Hazoury.

He also reported that the School of Architecture has developed specialized devices to facilitate the handling of samples.

He also said that the National Observatory of Pandemics and Emerging Pathogens, an initiative of the Iberoamerican University, hosted by both the MEPyD and SNS, was formally inaugurated, through which Unibe will be researching about pandemics and other emerging pathogens, in order to share them with decision-makers to contribute to an evidence-based decision-making culture.

Hazoury thanked state institutions and private companies that supported the initiatives from the beginning and mentioned: Seeding Labs and their managers, Melissa Wu, and Leah Lindsay; the Ministry of Public Health and its minister, Rafael Sánchez Cárdenas, and Dr. Altagracia Matos Medina; the Ministry of Economy, Planning and Development, headed by its minister Juan Ariel Jiménez; to the National Health Service, together with its directors: Chanel Rosa Chupany, doctor Noldis Naut Suberví, Emmanuel Moquete and María González; the COVID-19 Combat Health Management Committee, headed by Dr. Amado Alejandro Báez; and the Aeropaq company, Carlos Mejía.

He also thanked the members of the university who worked hard to make the laboratories possible today, among them Dr. Robert Paulino-Ramírez, Dr. Odile Camilo, Grace Cochón, Dr. Aída Mencía-Ripley, Dr. Leandro Féliz Matos, architect Sandra Gómez, doctor Sagrario Féliz, Rafael Vargas López, Zaidy Rijo, Antonio Perpiñán and Wenceslao Reyes.