Research Centre for Emerging and Reemerging Infectious Diseases
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In the second and third decades of the twentieth century, lethal outbreaks of infectious diseases were widespread around Iran; this period was followed by World War II. One of the lethal diseases which was pandemic in those years and affected all war-torn countries including Iran was louse borne relapsing fever. In those years, the epidemiologic aspect of recurrent fever was unknown but owing to great attempts by Dr. Baltazard, Dr. Bahmanyar, Dr. Seyyedian and Dr. Mofidi, factors such as possible carriers, duration of the latent phase, the effect of climatic changes on the disease, and variations in the antigens of spirochetes were presented to the world for the first time. After introducing new-born rabbits as a sensitive laboratory animals, new horizons were available for research and studies in this regard [37-38]. Due to the contagious nature of the disease, some of the members of the team were infected by the disease. Such studies were continued on Louse-borne recurrent fever and brought Pasteur Institute of Iran global fame and attracted a lot of international scientists' attention [4].

Dr. Yunos Karimi introduced Borrelia Baltazardi in 1976 in Ardebil for the first time [39] and a new method for controlling of Louse-borne recurrent fever in 1980 [40].

Members of Pasteur Institute of Iran was meanwhile sent to other countries as consultants of WHO regarding recurrent fevers.

Figure 11: Digging a rodent's burrow to isolate fleas from beneath the surface (the study on external parasites of rodents for recurrent fever studies); from right to left: Mostafa Amiri, Mohammad Hanifi, Hamed Hanifi, 1985, Zabol.


I did not choose the plague, but it desired me!

Marcel Baltazard (1907-1971), founder of research centre