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15th EAS Basic Course on Aerobiology

 

6-10 September 2021 in Brussels, Belgium

 

Organized by

 

Supported by


News

 

Do not hesitate to frequently come back to this webpage to be informed of the latest news about the course organization, which will depend on the evolution of the health situation in the next months.

 

  • 27/04/2021: The course date is officially postponed! The current evolution of the COVID-19 pandemic and the national vaccination campaigns force to maintain restrictions that no longer allow the planning of a face-to-face course on 5-9 July 2021. Therefore, it has been decided to postpone the face-to-face course to 6-10 September 2021. The new deadline for full registration (including fee payment) is 31 May 2021. The EAS and the co-hosts sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused. For any doubt or practical question, please send an e-mail at bca2021@sciensano.be.
  • 01/03/2021: New deadline for pre-registration was set on 15 March 2021.
  • 28/01/2021: The European Aerobiology Society announced a call for 3 grants covering the registration fee for the next European basic course on aerobiology. The procedures and application form are available here.
  • 11/01/2021: Pre-registrations are now open (please fill the online form at the bottom of this page).

 

 

 

Course rationale

 

Basic courses on Aerobiology are organized every two years by the European Aerobiology Society (EAS). They have been devised as a result of the growing interest in monitoring airborne particles. The increasing number of national aeroallergen networks that have been set up has enabled scientists to compare procedures and deepen fundamentals of monitoring techniques. Consequently the need for a higher quality level of analysis and for a standardization of procedures has emerged. To the purpose, a state-of-the-art educational program to train scientists, technicians and laboratory workers has been brought forward and was started with a series of European courses in aerobiology.

Click here to get more info about the educational actions of the European Aerobiology Society.

 

The 15th edition of the basic course on aerobiology, which will be held from 6 to 10 September 2021 in Brussels, will cover the following topics:

  • Botanical introduction to pollen development and morphology
  • Phenology & pollination
  • Methods & quality control for sampling airborne bioaerosols
  • Dynamics of pollen dispersal and transport
  • Forecasting & modelling
  • Applied time-series statistics
  • Pollen allergens and cross-reactivity
  • Identification of airborne pollen & fungal spores with practical exercises on light microscopy

 

The detailed course programme is available here (v1.1). The schedule is susceptible to be slightly updated.

 

 

 

Host

 

The Belgian Institute for Health (Sciensano) and the Free University of Brussels (ULB) are committed to collaborate so as to organize and offer the best conditions for both the plenary lectures and the practical exercises in spite of the sanitary constraints.

Sciensano (www.sciensano.be) is recognized as a nation-wide One-Health/Eco-Health research institute which performs public and animal health assignments at the community, regional, federal, European, and international levels. Sciensano’s research allows policy makers, as well as the scientific, medical, and veterinary communities to make better-informed, healthy choices. The Mycology & Aerobiology unit at Sciensano manages the Belgian aerobiological surveillance network (www.airallergy.be), which is the national reference for airborne pollen monitoring and understanding its impact on human health. At the international level, the Belgian network is involved in the European Aerobiology Society and was a founding member of the European Aeroallergen Network. The Mycology & Aerobiology unit also hosts the Belgian Coordinated Collection of Micro-organisms fungal collection (BCCM/IHEM) dedicated to human and animal health (http://bccm.belspo.be/about-us/bccm-ihem). The collection gathers more than 15000 fungal strains of biomedical interest, including fungal pathogens, species causing allergies or producing mycotoxins, as well as contaminants of the human environment.

 

The Free University of Brussels is the biggest French-speaking research university in Brussels. There are at least 2000 PhD students and around 3600 researchers and lecturers who work around different scientific fields and produce cutting edge research. The projects of these scientists span thematics that concern exact, applied and human sciences and researchers at the heart of the ULB have been awarded numerous international awards and recognitions. The research carried out at the ULB is financed by different bodies such as the European Research Council, the Walloon Region, the Brussels Capital Region, the National Fund for Scientific Research, and other foundations.

Professor Pierre Meerts leads the Plant Ecology and Biogeochemistry laboratory. This unit develops research in functional and evolutionary ecology of terrestrial ecosystems. More specifically, it specializes in the study of plant-soil relationships. This involves understanding how soil properties can influence the structure and evolution of plant populations and communities. On the other hand, the unit is interested in the influence of plants on biogeochemical cycles and ecosystem functioning. Their experimental models are human-disturbed systems in temperate and tropical regions: soils contaminated by heavy metals and their particular flora (metallophytes), disturbed forest ecosystems, and ecosystems invaded by exotic plants. The lab is involved in the teaching of plant biology, ecology and soil science at the Faculty of Science of the ULB.

 

 

 

Location

 

From a logistical point of view, Brussels city offers many advantages in terms of accessibility and comfort. The Brussels Airport (BRU) is about 10 km far from the accommodation and course locations, with frequent express train and taxi connections to the city center. The accommodation sites (more details coming soon) and course sites are all located in Brussels South-East part.

Course site n°1 address Sciensano, Rue Juliette Wytsman 14, 1050 Brussels
Course site n°2 address Jardin Botanique Jean Massart, Chaussée de Wavre 1850, 1160 Brussels

 

Plenary lectures will be given at Sciensano and at the botanical garden Jean Massart, depending on the planned day. Given that all practical exercises will be given at the Botanical Garden, the lectures on the same day will also be given there in order to avoid any inter-site travel.

An auditorium is available at Sciensano for at least 50 seats, with a wireless beamer, a flipchart and WiFi network. Depending on the latest health measures, the ULB will be able to host the course in a larger auditorium (200 seats or more) of the university campus, which is located at only 1 km from Sciensano site.

 

 

 

The botanical garden Jean Massart

 

Dedicated to research, university teaching and popular science, the living collections of the Botanical Garden Jean Massart include nearly 2000 plant species distributed into theme gardens. The garden of medicinal and aromatic plants, with 300 species, is one of the richest in Belgium. In the evolutionary garden, more than 600 species of flowering plants are grouped by family, following the main lines of evolution, from primitive types to the most evolved types. In the garden of cultivated plants, plants domesticated by human, accompanied by their wild ancestors, are classified according to their use. In the orchard, various ancient varieties of apple, pear, plum, peach and cherry trees are cultivated. The arboretum has many exotic species, among which conifers dominate. The garden has a wetland area erected as a nature reserve and incorporated into the Natura2000 network. Ferns, yellow iris, horsetail, phragmites, water mint and many other plants from our region grow here spontaneously, bordering the springs and ponds next to the Rouge-Cloître ponds. Experimental plots illustrate some research themes which are developed by the Plant Ecology and Biogeochemistry laboratory of the ULB, notably on invasive exotic species and on species resistant to heavy metal pollution. Finally, this experimental garden also hosts many schools and organizations for animations and workshops.

A guided tour of the botanical garden will be organized during the course.

 

 

 

 

Visit Brussels

 

A guided tour will be organized in Brussels city center. It will be a great opportunity for participants and teachers to (re)discover together the capital of Europe, before a social dinner in a typical Belgian restaurant.

 

 

More info on the Visit.Brussels website.

Get also informed about the latest local health measures on the Visit.Brussels website and on the Federal Public Service website.

 

 

 

Fees & grants

 

The registration fee include the following:

  • the course material for plenary and laboratory sessions
  • the accomodation for 5 nights, breakfast included
  • the lunches for 5 days
  • the catering for breaks
  • a special dinner
  • a guided tour in Brussels city center
  • a guided tour in the Botanical Garden Jean Massart

 

Participation fees for EAS members 580,00 €
Participation fees for non EAS members 680,00 €

 

The European Aerobiology Society offers 3 grants covering the registration fee for this course. Please visit the EAS website for more information on the procedures and the application form.

 

 

Registration (closed but possible waiting list)

 

This 15th edition of the course will be limited to 25 participants. Please complete and submit the following registration form. You will soon be advised by e-mail with the detailed procedure for the fee payement (mandatory in order to fully complete the registration).

For any question, please send an e-mail at bca2021@sciensano.be

(This question is mandatory)
Personal information
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Country
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Are you member of the European Aerobiology Society ?
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Are you member of the International Aerobiology Association (IAA) ?
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E-mail address