roots for life
Fondation Mérieux’s mission
is to fight infectious diseases
countries by enhancing
It is an independent family foundation
with official charitable status.
It has four main areas of action:
Strengthening health infrastructures
Training and sharing of knowledge
With the support of Fondation Christophe
et Rodolphe Mérieux, under the guidance
of the Institut de France, it develops a network of training
and applied research laboratories in the field,
at the heart of developing countries.
FOR OVER 40 YEARS
Fondation Mérieux was created in 1967 by Dr. Charles Mérieux,
who named it in honor of his father, Marcel Mérieux, who worked
with Louis Pasteur and founded Institut Mérieux in 1897. It was
awarded official charitable status in France in 1976.
First and foremost, Fondation Mérieux is a great family undertaking in
which successive generations, sharing common values in the Pasteurian
tradition, have succeeded in passing on their vision of biology serving
public health worldwide.
By bringing together people with a wide variety of skills and cultural
origins, Dr. Charles Mérieux has succeeded in founding an exceptional
international network. Fondation Mérieux has thus played a unifying role,
acting as a catalyst of initiatives with the common goal of fighting
infectious diseases throughout the world.
Under Alain Mérieux and Dr. Christophe Mérieux, Fondation Mérieux has
refocused its action in the field, at the heart of infectious outbreaks.
Supported by Fondation Christophe and Rodolphe Mérieux, Fondation
Mérieux is today present in Mali, Cambodia, Laos, China, Haiti, Lebanon,
Madagascar as well as other countries.
In 2009, Fondation Mérieux and the Institut Pasteur signed an agreement
aimed at encouraging collaboration in the fight against infectious
diseases in developing countries, that includes research programs and
concrete actions in the field.
To ensure the effectiveness, sustainability and openness of its
actions, Fondation Mérieux operates under strict principles:
> Act impartially without regard for any commercial or industrial
> Give priority to projects that deliver tangible results
> Work with an international, multi-disciplinary team of scientific
experts, including doctors, pharmacists, biologists, researchers,
specialists in infectiology, vaccinology, epidemiology, and others
> Work in partnership with international development organizations
and health authorities, and local healthcare professionals, while
respecting each country’s practices and culture
> Ensure that its actions form part of a sustainable development
approach. In particular, Fondation Mérieux makes use of local skills
(builders, fitters, laboratory equipment suppliers) for all its projects
> Transfer the ownership of diagnostic and research tools set up
by Fondation Mérieux to local healthcare professionals and give
them the resources they need for effective long-term management of
the scientific and financial aspects.
LEBANON INDIA LAOS
BURKINA FASO MADAGASCAR CAMBODIA
Permanent presence Programs
of the Foundation experts and/or partnerships
Training and sharing Patient support Strengthening health
of knowledge infrastructures
17 million MÉRIEUX
people each IS ACTIVE
year around IN THE FIELD
the world… Projects serving four priorities
…developing countries account
for 16 million deaths, including 5 million children
4 children die of pneumonia infrastructures
every minute Fondation Mérieux makes cutting-edge scientific and
the leading cause of death for children
medical tools available to developing countries
under 5 years old
> Through its network of applied research and training
laboratories in developing countries, Rodolphe Mérieux
Laboratories, that are already set up in Cambodia, Laos,
Mali, Haiti and Madagascar, aim to become reference
Tuberculosis laboratories in their countries for applied research,
1.7 million deaths epidemiological surveillance and training.
each year > By refurbishing and equipping local healthcare
facilities: medical test laboratories in regional
hospitals and healthcare centers.
After identifying target facilities in the field, in Cambodia,
Laos, Madagascar, Haiti and India, Fondation Mérieux
has refurbished them and at the same time provided
training programs for healthcare staff.
2 million children
die each year
of which 90% are under 5 years old
20 million deaths in 20 years
<< 39.5 million seropositive people,
of which 2.3 million are children under 15 years old
of knowledge 1 death every 30 seconds
500 million new cases each year
Fondation Mérieux aims to play an active part 40% of the world population is exposed
in the worldwide exchange and transfer
of scientific knowledge. Training and information
are at the heart of its strategy.
Spreading scientific innovation Neglected tropical
Fondation Mérieux aims to stimulate scientific
reflection and promote innovation worldwide. diseases
It organizes numerous symposia and conferences
in France and abroad, bringing together experts
1 person in 6 around
to discuss current public health issues. the world is affected
> The “Cent Gardes” symposium
on HIV, is held every two years ;
the last 2 were organized in Beijing and New Delhi.
> The Christophe Mérieux “Trends
in Virology” conference New emerging
also held every two years, reviews recent
developments in infectious diseases
and particularly emerging viruses. Since 1973, over 30 new diseases
> Moving forward the diagnosis of infectious associated with unknown viruses have appeared
diseases is an annual symposium
on the issues in diagnosing key pathologies
in developing countries
> Numerous conferences on more specific WHO data
public health issues held in France
and in developing countries
15% of the world population benefits
from 70% of worldwide healthcare expenditure
The poorest countries only Training healthcare professionals
spend $16 per person per year Fondation Mérieux organizes scientific and technical
on healthcare compared with an average training for healthcare professionals in developing
of $2000 in industrialized countries countries, including scientific experts, laboratory
and up to $4000 in the USA personnel, medical students…
Held in the field or at Les Pensières Conference Center,
the training covers vaccinology, diagnosis,
epidemiology or clinical biology laboratory
management and techniques.
> Promoting university education
A shortage Enhancing facilities for training the new scientific elites,
such as opening the Faculty of Pharmacy of Phnom
of qualified Penh, Cambodia and assisting setting up
healthcare staff a new Faculty of Pharmacy in Madagascar.
Advice on devising university programs for schools
Sub-Saharan Africa: of pharmacy and biology.
3% of worldwide > Training experts who pass on knowledge
healthcare staff – in the field
ADVAC (Advanced Vaccinology Course) dedicated to
Americas: 42% at physicians involved in local, regional or international
57 countries, mostly in Africa and Asia, decision makers (organized in partnership with the University
suffer from a serious shortage of healthcare staff.
of Geneva with the financial support from the European
The worst-affected countries only have one doctor
for over 33,000 inhabitants compared with
Commission and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation).
one doctor per 300 inhabitants in France. > Enhancing know-how
Imbalance between towns and rural areas Setting up local training actions to improve the professional
know-how of clinical biology staff.
- ACTION BIOMALI: improving clinical and biological
diagnosis abilities in Mali through various training actions.
- RESAOLAB: strengthening and building a network
of laboratories in Mali, Senegal and Burkina Faso,
Undiagnosed continuous training of laboratory personnel, quality
management and epidemiological monitoring (tuberculosis
or incorrectly and malaria). Program devised with the ministries of
health in these three countries and financially backed
diagnosed illnesses by AFD (French Development Agency).
False negatives, false positives,
unsuitable treatment, development of resistance
to treatments, contamination…
Around 300,000 people in Senegal, Burkina Faso
and Mali live with HIV, but 80% are unaware of it.
The majority of malaria cases
in Africa are poorly diagnosed.
One third of the world population is infected by tuberculosis, GLOBE :
only 60% of new operational tool serving
cases are identified developing countries
GLOBE (Global Link for Online Biomedical Expertise)
is a portal for scientific information and Internet-based
e-learning. The portal aims to train and facilitate
networking between scientists and healthcare
professionals from developing and industrialized
countries and provide operational solutions
to questions that arise in their daily practice.
Fondation Mérieux is involved at various levels, supporting researchers in developing countries,
and also directly conducting research programs in its own laboratories.
> Research programs on diseases such > Promote high level research
as tuberculosis, respiratory infections, in developing countries
malaria, HIV and hepatitis
Fondation Mérieux takes part in numerous local
Two applied research centers: the Laboratory
research programs on major pathologies (tuberculosis,
of Emerging Pathogens (Lyon-Gerland) and
HIV, malaria), providing expert advice, technical
the Christophe Mérieux Laboratory (created as part
resources and financial assistance.
of the Academy of Medical Sciences in Beijing).
Programs for the detection and identification Grants are awarded to young postgraduate
of emerging pathogens, including setting up tools scientists from industrialized and developing countries
for epidemiological monitoring, locating biomarkers and working on infectious diseases, in order to promote
of interest for studying infectious agents, creating North/South exchanges and cooperation.
and transferring technologies suited to research
The Christophe Mérieux Prize is awarded each year
in developing countries.
by Fondation Christophe and Rodolphe Mérieux
> To conduct its applied research activities, Fondation to researchers from developing countries who work
Mérieux has created an international network of research in the field on infectious diseases.
laboratories, GABRIEL (Global Approach to Biological
Research on Infectious Epidemics in Low-income
countries). GABRIEL includes the various Rodolphe
Mérieux Laboratories around the world, as well as other
public or private international research units, hospital
laboratories, NGOs and corporations involved in diagnosis.
It is supported by two applied research centers: the
Laboratory of Emerging Pathogens (Lyon-Gerland) and
the Christophe Mérieux Laboratory (created as part of
the Academy of Medical Sciences in Beijing).
GABRIEL aim is to provide support to its members in
developing countries in their research projects on infectious
diseases through extensive exchanges of ideas, procedures,
data and experience in biosafety, biomathematics, bioethics,
project management and grant applications.
GABRIEL is conducting two major research programs
on tuberculosis and respiratory infections with the
objective to provide laboratory tools for the epidemiological
surveillance of infectious agents of pneumonia, influenza
and resistant tuberculosis based on technologies which
can also be applied to other diseases like malaria, HIV,
diarrhoea or hepatitis.
Although Fondation Mérieux’s field
of expertise is biology, it also aims
to take a more general approach
to public health by developing actions
to support patients and accompany them
in their return to active life.
> Microcredit program:
This program, conducted in Haiti,
in partnership with ACME (Association
for Cooperation with Micro-Enterprises) and
with the support of the GHESKIO Centers,
entitles seropositive women to a range of
services including medical diagnosis,
healthcare and monitoring, information,
training and access to microcredit.
> Programs to improve screening
and monitoring of infectious diseases
(HIV, tuberculosis, malaria, etc.) in
underprivileged regions (ACTION BIOMALI
throughout Mali, screening for Chagas’ disease
in Argentina, etc.)
> Subsidies for humanitarian initiatives
conducted by local NGOs in the field, aimed
at assisting people in developing countries and
facilitating access to healthcare.
Fondation Mérieux benefits from the financial support
of its long-term partners, including healthcare corporations, large foundations,
the European Community and international development agencies.
Through their confidence and their commitment, Fondation Mérieux
is able to undertake long-term actions and adopt a sustainable strategy
in the fight against infectious diseases throughout the world.
69002 Lyon / France
Fax: 33 (0)4 72 40 79 50
Tel: 33 (0)4 72 40 79 79
17, rue Bourgelat
07-09 - Printed in France on recycled paper - Credit photo : J. Millet, Jupiterimages, C. Ganet, studio Bergoend, J.B. Mercier & studio K, P. Tournaire, C. Bécam, B. Eymann - THERA Conseil - RCS Lyon B 396 160 242