One Health Leader, Veterinarian Dr. Jean Blancou Dies

Obituary: Jean Blancou (1936-2010)

Dr. Jean Blancou, former Director General of the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) from 1991 to 2000, died in Paris on 10 Nov 2010 at the age of 74. Son of wildlife expert Lucien Blancou, Jean qualified as a veterinarian from the National Veterinary College of Toulouse, France in 1960, obtained a degree in Tropical Veterinary Medicine in Paris in 1963 and a doctoral degree in biological sciences in Nancy, France, in 1982.

Jean Blancou began his career as Advisor to the Veterinary Services in Ethiopia, where he led a campaign against rinderpest in the southern territories. This was followed by missions within the French technical cooperation services in Niger, Madagascar and Senegal, mainly in laboratories for diagnosis, vaccine production and veterinary research. He returned to France in 1977, nominated Deputy Director and subsequently Director of the National Centre for Research on Rabies and Wildlife Diseases, a WHO Collaborating Centre located in Nancy, France. He held that position until 1990, undertaking in-depth research on the diagnosis, causal agents, epidemiology and control of rabies. ………