Numerous scientific partners of IRD, in France and in the countries of the Global South, are at the forefront of the fight against the pandemic, through actions of research, in the field and in support of public decision. Meet Prof. Pfukenyi, from the University of Zimbabwe.

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Prof. Davies M. Pfukenyi is the Dean of the Faculty of Veterinary Science at the University of Zimbabwe, in southern Africa. He and his colleagues from the faculty are long-term partners of IRD regarding animal and zoonotic diseases.

The scientists currently study the genetic characteristics of different coronaviruses found in Zimbabwean bats. As the local population frequently visits the bat colonies’ habitats to collect guano for its crops, the coronaviruses the bats carry could easily be transmitted to humans and cause diseases similar to Covid-19.

Prof. Pfukenyi coordinates the multiple joint IRD-CIRAD-UZ projects on zoonotic diseases, such as CAZCOM, and supervises students working on these topics.


Get to know more partners working on the current pandemic in the original article in French.