Introduction of KOICID

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1 Background of KOICID Establishment

  Infectious diseases are one of the major issues not only in Korea but all around the world. In recent years, the world has been suffering from infectious diseases such as severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS, 2002), avian influenza (2003, 2013), swine flu (2009), Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS, 2012), Ebola disease (2014). In 2015, Zika virus disease was prevalent mainly in Central and South America, and it left complications such as microcephaly and Guillain-Barre syndrome. In addition, these novel infectious diseases are easily spread to other countries through frequent international exchanges. In fact, the 2015 Korea outbreak of MERS resulted 186 cases, 38 deaths, which was transmitted through a person who traveled and returned from the Middle East.

Meanwhile, the prevalence of subtropical and tropical infectious diseases is also a big concern due to climate change and global warming. If the subtropical and tropical climatic regions are expended, there is a possibility that subtropical and tropical infectious diseases such as dengue fever and tropical malaria could spread worldwide. In 2014 in Japan, 162 autochthonous dengue cases were reported for the first time in nearly 70 years.

The epidemic of infectious diseases causes great damage to many sectors of a country. In addition to human loss, there are serious side effects such as social pathology and economic downturn. Therefore, it is important to prevent the outbreak of infectious diseases to the best of their ability, and if they do occur, respond quickly and well in the early stages to prevent further spread. In order to prevent the outbreak and spread of infectious diseases, research on infectious diseases must be activated. It is necessary to actively conduct basic and clinical research on infectious diseases, such as the development of diagnostic methods and clinical verification, treatment drug development and clinical trials, prevention vaccine development, and clinical trials.

However, in order to activate basic and clinical research on these infectious diseases, it can be difficult with the ability of a country. For example, in developing any good diagnostic method, it is necessary to verify the sample obtained from the actual clinical practice and apply it to the patient. In some countries, even though they are equipped with a good research environment and capable of developing the diagnostic method, but they don't have enough clinical resources for the infectious disease. On the other hand, in some countries where there are many infectious diseases and clinical resources, but they don't have a proper research environment for developing diagnostic methods, drugs, and vaccines. Therefore, in order to properly respond to infectious diseases, it is necessary to put together efforts to develop and put into practice new diagnostic methods, treatments, and vaccines through international cooperation.

The Ministry of Science, ICT in Korea launched a project to recognize this problem and establish an international cooperation network for infectious diseases in late 2015. The mission was then delegated to Inje University, KOICID.

KOICID, Inje University which was founded in 2015, was transferred to Chungnam National University in March 2020

2Purpose of KOICID Establishment

The purpose of this institute is to promote the cooperation, cooperation between government agencies, universities, research institutes, and hospitals related to infectious diseases in Korea and other countries, to develop a diagnosis, treatment, and prevention methods for infectious diseases, and to suppress the spread of infectious diseases among countries.

  1. We conclude a mutual agreement for joint research on infectious diseases with universities, research institutes and hospitals in Korea.
  2. We conclude a mutual agreement for joint research on infectious diseases with government agencies, universities, research institutes and hospitals in countries in Southeast Asia, Africa, Latin America, the Middle East and Central Asia.
  3. We help to establish a clinical sample bank for each collaborating institution, and support human exchanges.
  4. We support Joint research on infectious diseases between each institution. The joint research covers the sharing of clinical samples, the exchange of research personnel, the sharing of clinical data and information, and the joint non-clinical and clinical research.
  5. We work jointly to prevent the spread of infectious diseases between countries.
3Main Businesses of KOICID
  1. Mutual agreements with domestic and foreign infectious disease-related organizations
    To provide a foundation for the International Cooperation Center for Infectious Diseases, which enables development through academic exchanges and information exchanges.
  2. Exchange of research manpower with domestic and] foreign institutes
    To establish educational systems to cultivate professional manpower, according to the characteristics of institutions or countries, and to assist each institute to improve and develop through exchanges of experts and invitational training.
  3. Implementation of joint non-clinical and clinical research
    To produce innovative and developmental outcomes through academic exchanges, information exchanges, and human resource exchanges
  4. Collaborative efforts to contain the spread of infectious diseases
    To exchange information on infectious disease outbreaks, develop disease prediction systems, strengthening of research capabilities, etc.