Hokkaido University International Institute for Zoonoisis Control
Head, Specially Invited Professor, University Professor
Hiroshi Kida, DVM, PhD, MJA


Recently, emerging and reemerging infectious diseases such as SARS, MERS, Ebola and Zika virus infections, pandemic influenza, pneumonic plague, and leptospirosis, are appearing worldwide, and become of major concern to public health. And now, COVID-19 caused by infection with SARS-CoV-2 is tremendously afflicting people around the world. All of these diseases are zoonoses whose causative agents infect both humans and animals. The agents are usually harmless in their natural host wild animals and occasionally transmit to other animal species including humans, causing infectious diseases. Drastic increase of population and changes in the global environment, and development of the transportation system contribute to the emergence of new disease by bringing people into closer and more frequent contact with pathogens. We, therefore, must accept the fact that these zoonotic infections are not eradicable unlike human-only infections such as small pox, measles, and polio. Zoonoses can be controlled only by taking preemptive measures to predict and prevent their outbreaks.

For the establishment of preemptive measures against zoonoses, a prerequisite is to identify natural host animals carrying potential pathogens and to elucidate the routes by which the pathogens transmit from those animals to other animals, including humans. It was, therefore, essential for us to have a research organization specializing in the control of zoonoses. Such an organization should undertake comprehensive studies of diagnostic methods, host range, ecology, and pathogenicity of the infectious microorganisms, and hence establish strategies for prediction, prevention and control of outbreaks of the zoonoses. In addition, we were facing a lack of human resources for the control of zoonoses.

In order to boost the level of research and education in zoonosis science, Hokkaido University established the “Research Center for Zoonosis Control” on 1st April, 2005 with a time of 5 years. This research center has been accomplished unique and unprecedented scientific and educational activities by bringing together experts in bacteriology, virology, parasitology, immunology, pathology, and computer science. To establish effective strategies for prediction, prevention and control of zoonoses, the research center has conducted global surveillance to identify natural host animals and transmission routes of the pathogens, and to reveal determinants for the pathogenicity and the host range of the pathogens. The outcomes of the research have been pooled as a database for preservation and utilization of biological resources, and the materials are supplied for diagnosis and vaccine production. The first example is “Hokkaido University Influenza Virus Library” consisting of 4,700 virus strains of 144 combinations of 16 HA and 9 NA subtypes for vaccine and diagnostic use especially at the emergence of pandemic influenza. At the same time, our educational program provides lectures and training courses for researchers, technicians and graduate students, and have a mission to bring up “Zoonosis Control Experts” who are responsible for the control of zoonoses worldwide.

On 1st April 2010, the Research Center for Zoonosis Control was certified as a Joint Usage/Research Center by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, and the time limit of five-year was lifted because the scientific and educational activity of the Center was highly evaluated. On 25th November 2011, the Research Center for Zoonosis Control was designated as WHO Collaborating Centre for Zoonoses Control by the World Health Organization.

On April 1, 2021, we took a new step forward as the International Institute for Zoonosis Control, consisting of the Zoonosis Research Unit based on the Research Center for Zoonosis Control; the International Collaboration Unit based on the Global Station for Zoonosis Control under the Hokkaido University Global Institution for Collaborative Research and Education; and the Veterinary Research Unit composed of faculty members from five laboratories in the Graduate School of Veterinary Medicine.

COVID-19 reminded us once again the importance of international cooperation for the control of zoonoses that have no borders. We are, thus, carrying out coherent scientific and educational activities for the control of zoonoses and preparedness for future pandemics by international collaboration under the umbrella of One World, One Health concept.



  • BVM 1967 Hokkaido University (Veterinary Medicine)
  • DVM 1967 Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries
  • MVM 1969 Hokkaido University (Veterinary Medicine)
  • PhD 1977 Hokkaido University (Veterinary Medicine)



1969-76 Research Officer for Vaccine Development, Takeda Chemical Industries, Ltd
1976-78 Lecturer, Dept Veterinary Hygiene & Microbiology, Hokkaido University
1978-94 Associate Professor, Dept Vet Hygiene & Microbiology, Hokkaido Univ
1980-81 Visiting Scientist, WHO Collaboration Centre/ St. Jude CRH, Memphis, TN
1986-87 Visiting Professor, WHO Collaboration Centre/ St. Jude CRH
1989 Professor, University of Zambia School of Vet Med, Lusaka, Zambia
1994-95 Professor and Chairman, Dept Vet Hygiene and Microbiology, Hokkaido Univ
1995-2012 Professor, Dept of Disease Control, Hokkaido Univ Graduate School Vet Med
1995-2001 Hokkaido University Senator
1999-date Expert, Member of Working Group for WHO Global Influenza Programme
2001-05 Dean, Hokkaido Univ School and Graduate School of Veterinary Medicine
2004-date OIE Expert, Reference Laboratory for Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza,
2005-12 Director, Hokkaido University Research Center for Zoonosis Control
2007-date Member of the Japan Academy
2011-date Head, WHO Collaborating Centre for Zoonoses Control
2012-14 Specially Appointed Professor, Graduate School of Veterinary Medicine

Head, Hokkaido University Research Center for Zoonosis Control

Professor Emeritus, Hokkaido University

2014-2016 Specially Appointed Prof, Hokk Univ Res Center for Zoonosis Control

University Professor, Hokkaido University

Specially Invited Prof, Hokkaido Univ Research Center for Zoonosis Control

2017-2021 Head, National Research Center for the Control and Prevention of Infectious Diseases at Nagasaki University
2021-date Head & Specially Invited Professor, Hokkaido University International Institute for Zoonosis Control



  • The Japanese Society of Veterinary Science Award for “Studies on the Classification of Avian Paramyxoviruses” (1982)
  • Hokkaido Science and Technology Award for “Studies on the Mechanisms of Emergence of Pandemic Influenza A Viruses and their Control Measures” (2002)
  • The 58th Hokkaido Shimbun Cultural Prize for “Ecology of Influenza Viruses in Birds, Animals and Humans” (2004)
  • The Japan Prize of Agricultural Science and the Yomiuri Agriculture Prize for “Ecology of Influenza Viruses” (2005)
  • The 95th Japan Academy Prize for “Studies for the Control of Influenza - Mechanism of Emergence of Pandemic Influenza Virus Strains in Poultry, Domestic Animals and Humans, and Molecular Basis of the Neutralization of Viral Infectivity with Antibodies-” (2005)
  • Animal Science Prize for “Clarification of Ecology of Influenza Viruses and Establishment of Influenza Virus Library and its Application to the Diagnosis and Prevention of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza” (2009)
  • All Japan Agriculture Decoration for “the Achievement of Control of Avian Influenza” (2011)
  • Prize for Distinguished Service to Hokkaido for “Contribution to Clarification of Ecology of Influenza Viruses and Control of Avian Influenza” (2016)
  • The Order of the Sacred Treasure, Gold and Silver Star decollated by the Emperor (2017)
  • Manifested as a Person of Distinguished Cultural Merit for Virology and International Contribution (2017)
  • Japanese Society for Vaccinology Takahashi Prize for “Studies on the Development and Practical Use of Pandemic Influenza Vaccine” (2019)


Summary of scientific contribution of Prof. Hiroshi Kida

Prof. Kida conducted studies on ecology of influenza viruses and achieved following results;


  1. Natural host of influenza A virus is ducks. In ducks, influenza viruses infect orally and replicate in the colon and are excreted with feces.
  2. Viruses excreted in their nesting lakes are preserved in frozen lake water in winter in Siberia and Alaska.
  3. A/Hong Kong/68 (H3N2) pandemic virus is a genetic reassortant generated in the respiratory tract of pig concurrently infected with human H2N2 and duck H3 viruses.
  4. The other past 3 pandemic viruses were most likely also reassortants generated in pigs between human and avian influenza viruses.
  5. Influenza virus library of 4,700 virus strains consisting of 144 combinations of 16 HA and 9 NA subtypes was established.
  6. Inactivated whole virus particle vaccines prepared from viruses of different HA and NA subtypes that may cause future pandemics in the library induced most effective immune response in mice and cynomolgus monkeys, assuring the usefulness of the library for pandemic vaccine preparation.
  7. Inactivated whole virus particle vaccines prepared by 4 manufacturers in Japan were much more effective compared to current split vaccines and now under clinical study.
  8. Prof. Kida has internationally contributed to the control of avian influenza.



Veterinary Microbiology, Zoonoses, Vaccinology, Immunology, Virology, Bacteriology, Ecology and pathogenesis of influenza viruses



364 original articles and 186 book chapters and reviews



More than 200 times



Kita-20, Nishi-10, Kita-ku, Sapporo, 001-0020, Japan

Tel: 011-706-9500 Fax: 011-706-9500

E-mail: kida@vetmed.hokudai.ac.jp

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