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NTI | bio Announces the Winners of the 2019 Next Generation for Biosecurity Competition

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NTI | bio, in partnership with the Next Generation Global Health Security Network, is pleased to announce the winners of the third annual joint Next Generation for Biosecurity Competition. Gayatri Sanku, a PhD student at Georgetown University-National Institutes of Health, Jarjieh Fang, a master of public health candidate at George Washington University and a senior research analyst at Pharmerit International, and Lucky Sunshine L. Go, a medical student at St. Luke's Medical Center, College of Medicine in the Philippines, took first place with their paper SynthRITE (Research, Innovation, Technology, and Ethics): An Online Community to Facilitate Biosecurity and Biosafety Discourse and Address Key Deficits in Current Approaches. In the paper, they propose the development of SynthRITE “a cohesive vision for connecting novel stakeholders around the world and strengthening the discourse around biosecurity and biosafety.” As the global community develops new norms to govern emerging technologies, they call for a focus on inclusivity, education, and awareness.

The winning team was selected from papers submitted by students and young professionals from nine countries across four continents. An international expert panel of 19 judges from seven countries across five continents evaluated the papers in a three-round judging process. In addition to the winning team, four teams will be recognized this year for their outstanding submissions to the competition. Michael T. Parker, Michelle Murti, and R. Emerson Tuttle took second place for their paper, Global Stewardship of Recombinant Plasmid Sequences: A Win-Win Approach to Enhancing Biosecurity and Biological Sciences Research. The two honorable mention papers and their authors are listed below.

The winning team of the 2019 Next Generation for Biosecurity Competition will receive travel support to attend the 2019 Meeting of States Parties to the Biological Weapons Convention.  They will present on their winning paper during an NTI-hosted side event, Engaging the Non-Governmental Sector and the Next Generation to Address Emerging Biological Risks Associated with Advances in Technology on December 6, 2019.

The Next Generation for Biosecurity Competition underscores the importance of promoting a global cadre of multi-sectoral, young professionals dedicated to reducing catastrophic biological risks. Follow #NextGenBiosecurity for updates during the upcoming Meeting of States Parties to the Biological Weapons Convention.

2019 Next Generation for Biosecurity Competition Winner

SynthRITE (Research, Innovation, Technology, and Ethics): An Online Community to Facilitate Biosecurity and Biosafety Discourse and Address Key Deficits in Current Approaches

  • Gayatri Sanku, BS, MPH, PhD Student, Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Georgetown University-National Institutes of Health Graduate Partnership Program
  • Jarjieh Fang, BS, MPH Candidate, Milken Institute for Public Health, George Washington University; Senior Research Analyst, Pharmerit International
  • Lucky Sunshine L. Go, BSPH, MD Student, St. Luke's Medical Center College of Medicine, Philippines

2019 Next Generation for Biosecurity Competition Runner-Up

Global Stewardship of Recombinant Plasmid Sequences: A Win-Win Approach to Enhancing Biosecurity and Biological Sciences Research

  • Michael T. Parker, Georgetown College Office of the Dean, Georgetown University, Washington, DC, USA
  • Michelle Murti, Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada
  • R. Emerson Tuttle, Defense Threat Reduction Agency, Fort Belvoir, VA, USA

Honorable Mentions

Collaborative actions and cross-sectoral partnerships: Fostering biosafety and biosecurity norms nationally, reigonally and globally

  • Lennox Kesington Ebbarnezh, Infectious Diseases Institute, College of Health Sciences, Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda
  • Doreen Nyakato, School of Biomedical Sciences, College of Health Sciences, Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda
  • Maya Homsy King, University College Utrecht, Netherlands

Integrating Biosecurity in Low Resource/Developing Countries: Multi-Dimensional Management Strategy

  • Faouzia Tanveer, Department of Biotechnology, Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad, Pakistan
  • Tariq Khan, University of Malakand, Chakdara Dir Lower Pakistan
  • Javed Muhammad, Department of Microbiology, University of Swabi, Pakistan; Pakistan Biological Safety Association, Khyber Pakhtunkhawa Chapter

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