In an effort to popularize immunology at grassroots level, young researchers and physicians from the HIPI Unit participated in the “Day of Immunology 2021” by visiting elementary schools to discuss with children about the immune system, microbes and vaccines.

April 29th is the world day of immunology promoted each year by the International Union of Immunological Societies (IUIS) and the European Federation of Immunological Societies (EFIS) to highlight research in immunology and the importance of immunology to global health. The topic for 2021 was unsurprisingly “Immunology and Covid-19”.

In France, this initiative is promoted by the French Society of Immunology (SFI) and its affiliated French Club of Young Immunologists (FCYI). This year, Noushin Mossadegh-Keller (CIML – Marseille) and Mathieu Chevalier (INSERM U976 – Paris) coordinated the SFI project: “Immunology and Covid-19 through the eyes of the children”. They created a short video for social media in which children are interviewed about immunology, the Covid-19 virus and the vaccine, and also prepared a presentation material suitable for the young children at elementary schools. Lucille Derivry, Marion Lambert and Grégoire de Frémont (Team 4) were among the first volunteers; interaction with pupils in the different classes was excellent and worth doing! Several schools have and will benefit from such actions (Marseille, Paris, Nantes…) thanks to scientists who are willing to share and popularize immunology to the general public at all levels.

Immunology and Covid-19 through the eyes of our children

Mobilization of young immunologists discussing about the immune system, viruses and vaccine with children in Elementary schools (6-11 year old). Pictures : Lucille Derivry, Mathieu Chevalier, Marion Lambert and Grégoire de Frémont (INSERM HIPI Unit, Team 4) at Ecole Saint-André in Choisy-le-Roi.