Infectious diseases cause 17 million deaths each year around the world, predominantly in developing countries. For more than 50 years, the Mérieux Foundation has been taking action to help ensure that every child, woman, and man has fairer access to essential healthcare.
Dr. Charles Mérieux created the Mérieux Foundation in 1967 in honor of his father, Marcel Mérieux, a student of Louis Pasteur.
In the first few decades, the foundation’s work ranged from major vaccination campaigns in Africa and international symposia in the earliest days of the HIV/AIDS pandemic, to the first BSL4 biocontainment laboratory in Europe for research on dangerous pathogens.
Starting in the 2000s, under the impetus of Dr. Christophe Mérieux, the foundation headed into the field to build local capacities to fight infectious disease. A decade later, the foundation started to address other factors affecting the well-being of vulnerable populations with programs for education, nutrition, and socioeconomic development targeting mothers and children.
In 2012, the Mérieux Foundation USA was founded in Washington, D.C. to continue expanding the exceptional international network of partners, scientists, and public health experts improving the lives of those most in need.
Learn more about our legacy by following the timeline below, from our most recent projects to our origins alongside Louis Pasteur in 1897.
Kickoff: Coordinated One Health Approach to risk assessment of hemorrhagic fever viruses, 5-year project
Sample Collection and High Throughput Sequencing Training with representatives from 5 Guinean partners
Field Sample Collection and Molecular Laboratory Diagnostics Trainings in partnership with LNERV and WALIC
Senegal hosts the first Advanced Course on Diagnostics in French on the African continent (Afro-ACDx).
Opening of the Youssouf Issabré maternity hospital in Mali.
Rodolphe Mérieux Laboratory of Tunisia
Opening of the Rodolphe Mérieux Laboratory, a level 3 biosafety laboratory, at the Institut Pasteur in Tunis.
IRD and the Mérieux Foundation renew their agreement and strengthen their cooperation on healthcare and research relating to infectious diseases.
Chad, Guinea and Mali
Global Laboratory Leadership Program launch, supported by the Global Fund
Inauguration of the Rodolphe Mérieux Laboratory – Centre of diagnostics and expertise for tuberculosis and mycobacteria in Casablanca.
Inauguration of diaTROPIX rapid diagnostic test production unit at Institut Pasteur of Dakar.
Latin America and the Caribbean
Partnership with PAHO to develop a polio containment e-learning course for the Americas
Launch of APRECIT project to improve latent tuberculosis screening and care.
Launch of SEALAB project to strengthen lab networks and epidemic response in Southeast Asia.
Madagascar and DRC
Mérieux Foundation joins multi-year USAID Infectious Disease Detection and Surveillance (IDDS) project.
The Mérieux Foundation and its partners mobolized against COVID-19.
Inauguration of the Alain Mérieux High School in the village of Mahatsara, built with the Akamasoa association.
Launch of Phase 3 of RESAOLAB – West African Network of clinical biology laboratories.
Democratic Republic of the Congo
Rodolphe Mérieux Laboratory at the National Institute of Biomedical Research (INRB) in Goma.
New massive open online course (MOOC) on Quality Management, created with AFNOR and Institut Pasteur.
10th Anniversary of the Advanced Course on Diagnostics (ACDx), created with the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine
Cameroon, Mali and Niger
Start of Tackling Deadly Diseases in Africa (TDDA) program initiated by the UK government.
Inauguration of a new health center for vulnerable populations in the Bekaa plain.
20th anniversary of the Advanced Course of Vaccinology (ADVAC), created with the University of Geneva.
The Bachelor of Applied Medical Sciences (BAMS) professional training program for senior lab technicians integrated into the State University of Haiti.
Launch of the study on lower acute respiratory infections in Rohingya refugee camps to determine the healthcare interventions needed.
Inauguration of the Laboratories Directorate and Continuing Training Center Inaugurated in Niamey, part of the RESAOLAB project.
Inauguration of a second mobile laboratory provided to G5 Sahel member countries.
Inauguration of the National Laboratories Directorate and Continuing Training Center in Conakry, built through RESAOLAB.
Launch of the first health education kits for children with the Malagasy Ministry of Public Health.
Guinea, India, Laos and Senegal
Launch of four-year project to conduct biological threat reduction activities.
Launch of the new Global Task Force on Cholera Control strategy to reduce cholera deaths by 90% by 2030.
Celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Foundation at the Les Pensières Center for Global Health.
Inauguration of the first Food Safety Laboratory in Vientiane.
Rodolphe Mérieux Laboratory in Cambodia
Inauguration of the Rodolphe Mérieux Laboratory in Phnom Penh, following renovation work and strengthening of the technical capacity of the laboratory.
Inauguration of the “Maison Bénédicte”, a training and community center for young people.
Center of Infectiology Lao Christophe Mérieux Lao PDR
The Christophe Mérieux Center for Infectious Disease becomes the Center of Infectiology Lao Christophe Mérieux following official recognition by the Laos Ministry of Health.
Inauguration of the Charles Mérieux Center for Infectious Disease with a Rodolphe Mérieux Laboratory in the Fundhacre Hospital in Rio Branco
Inauguration of the SPHaitiLAB project to help improve the health of Haiti’s population by conducting analyses and offering strategic advice on laboratory policy.
Launch of the I-Lab project in an effort to help Senegal’s National Laboratory Directorate implement an automated system for collecting epidemiological data from laboratories.
Launch of the LAB-NET project in Guinea to establish a dedicated surveillance system for viral hemorrhagic fevers.
Rodolphe Mérieux Laboratory in Bangladesh
Inauguration of the Rodolphe Mérieux Laboratory in Chittagong (Bangladesh).
Mother and Child
Launch of Mother and Child projects in Iraqi Kurdistan.
Mobile laboratory in Mali
Inauguration of a mobile laboratory dedicated to the detection of the Ebola virus is set up in the Charles Mérieux Center for Infectious Disease in Bamako.
Four countries join the RESAOLAB network: Benin, Guinea, Niger and Togo.
Docteur Christophe Mérieux Center
Creation of the Docteur Christophe Mérieux Center in Phnom Penh (Cambodia) with “Enfants du Mékong”
Rodolphe Mérieux Laboratory in Lebanon
Inauguration of the Rodolphe Mérieux Laboratory in Beirut.
Four years after Mali, the BAMS (Bachelor in Applied Medical Sciences) training course is launched in Haiti.
The first ACDx advanced diagnostics course is held at Les Pensières Center for Global Health.
Charles Mérieux Center for Infectious Disease in Madagascar
Inauguration of the Charles Mérieux Center for Infectious Disease and the Rodolphe Mérieux Laboratory in Antananarivo.
Launch of the West African Network of Biomedical Analysis Laboratories (RESAOLAB, Réseau d’Afrique de l’Ouest des Laboratoires de Biologie médicale) to strengthen the health infrastructure in Burkina Faso, Mali and Senegal.
Christophe Mérieux Center for Infectious Disease in Lao PDR
Inauguration of the Christophe Mérieux Center for Infectious Disease and the Rodolphe Mérieux Laboratory in Vientiane.
Rodolphe Mérieux Laboratory in Haiti
Inauguration of the Rodolphe Mérieux Laboratory in Port-au-Prince.
Launch of the GABRIEL network, an international network of laboratories cooperating on research into infectious diseases in developing countries.
Christophe Mérieux Laboratory in China
Inauguration of the Christophe Mérieux Laboratory in Beijing.
Emerging Pathogens Laboratory
Inauguration of the Emerging Pathogens Laboratory in Lyon (France).
Launch of the BAMS (Bachelor in Applied Medical Sciences) training course for laboratory technicians in Mali.
Charles Mérieux Conference
The first Charles Mérieux Conference, on the theme of global health.
Fondation Christophe et Rodolphe Mérieux
The Fondation Rodolphe Mérieux becomes the Fondation Christophe et Rodolphe Mérieux.
Rodolphe Mérieux Laboratory in Cambodia
Inauguration of the Rodolphe Mérieux Laboratory in the University of Health Sciences in Phnom Penh.
Charles Mérieux Center for Infectious Disease in Mali
Inauguration of the Charles Mérieux Center for Infectious Disease and the Rodolphe Mérieux Laboratory in Bamako.
Faculty of Pharmacy in Phnom Penh
Reconstruction of the Faculty of Pharmacy in Phnom Penh (Cambodia).
Alain Mérieux becomes President of the Mérieux Foundation
Fondation Rodolphe Mérieux
Creation of the Fondation Rodolphe Mérieux.
Creation of ADVAC, an international advanced course in vaccinology.
Jean Mérieux-Inserm BSL-4 Laboratory
Creation of the Jean Mérieux-Inserm BSL-4 laboratory in Lyon (France).
Creation of the Cent Gardes Symposium dedicated to HIV at Les Pensières Center for Global Health.
Creation of Bioforce development, for training human health logisticians.
Granted public interest status
The Mérieux Foundation receives public interest status.
Vaccination campaign in Brazil
One hundred million Brazilians are vaccinated against meningitis in a huge vaccination campaign.
Association for the Promotion of Preventative Medicine
Creation of the Association for the Promotion of Preventative Medicine (known today as the Agence de Médecine Préventive, AMP).
Creation of the Mérieux Foundation by Doctor Charles Mérieux, as a tribute to his father Marcel Mérieux.
Marcel Mérieux, a student of Louis Pasteur, creates the Institut Mérieux, dedicated to the development and production of human and animal vaccines.