The Pasteur Center of Cameroun (CPC) was inaugurated in 1959. As a public administrative institution of the Ministry of Public Health, and as a Reference and Public Health laboratory with financial autonomy, the CPC is a member of the Pasteur Institutes International Network (PIIN) and of the GABRIEL network since 2015.
The CPC has been headquartered in Yaoundé and opened a branch in Garoua in 1985 and a site in Douala in 2004.
The CPC contributes to fighting infectious diseases through four distinct but highly complementary missions:
- Providing services to patients (medical analysis and vaccination) and to industry (food and water quality control),
- Ensuring surveillance and control of epidemic diseases,
- Conducting health-related operational research,
- Training undergraduates, graduates and post-graduates.
Since its creation in 1959, the CPC has built its expertise in microbiological procedures ranging from classical techniques (microcopy, serology, cultures and neutralization assays) to modern technology and techniques (molecular biology, sequence analyses and pathogen profiling). Thanks to this expertise, the CPC has been recognized at both the national and international levels as the national and/or regional reference laboratory for the surveillance of more than 20 different infectious diseases.
Organization and infrastructures
The CPC has four departments:
- The Scientific Department, with teams carrying out research and public health and water/food quality control activities and hosting students within the framework of research activities.
- The Medical Department, in charge of routine medical biology, vaccination and training activities.
- The Administrative and Financial Department, which handles all support services.
- The Delegation Department, which oversees the CPC branch in Garoua.
The CPC teams work in specialized laboratories to target the most endemic pathogens:
- 10 BSL-2 facilities
- 5 BSL-2+ facilities
- 1 BSL-3 facility
The facilities core activities take place primarily in the ten biosafety level (BSL)-2 facilities. The additional five BSL-2+ facilities, which are equipped with unidirectional air flow, are designed for investigating selected epidemic-causing pathogens, such as polioviruses, rabies virus, arboviruses, human influenza viruses, and certain fungi.
They host the only BSL-3 facility in Cameroon equipped with two class II biosafety cabinets and one class III biosafety cabinet. The BSL-3 unit is used to diagnose high-consequence pathogens such as arboviruses and those causing multi-drug resistant tuberculosis, avian influenza, monkey pox, and viral hemorrhagic fever.
Priority research areas
The CPC's laboratory activities include:
The ambition is to continue to boost research in Cameroon and increase its impact on health issues. Thus, 3 transversal research priorities have been defined and will be implemented in the different projects shared between the teams:
- Prevention and control of communicable and non-communicable diseases
- Molecular characterization and impact on diagnosis and vaccine response
- Infectious and physico-chemical risks in the environment
These axes will promote multidisciplinarity and interdisciplinarity, to contribute to the improvement of human health in a direct way by interventions in public health or indirectly by the reinforcement of knowledge and know-how.