Dr. John Lednicky and former EGH chair Dr. Gregory Gray, worked with former Saudi Deputy Minister of Health, Dr. Ziad Memish, to characterize respiratory pathogens in breathing air and in high contact surfaces in King Abdul Aziz International (KAAI) Airport, Pilgrims City, Jeddah, during the 2013 Hajj. Their pilot study has been published: Ziad A Memish, Malak Almasri, Abdullah Assirri, Ali M Al-Shingiti, Gregory C Gray, John A Lednicky, and Saber Yezli. 2014. Environmental sampling for respiratory pathogens in Jeddah airport during the 2013 Hajj season. American Journal of Infection Control 42:1266-1269. Their article is listed as an issue highlight (volume 42, issue 12), December 2014.
The researchers found influenza B virus in breathing air and various respiratory pathogens on high-contact surfaces. The study participants were trained by Dr. John Lednicky on the use of a BioSampler, a type of active air sampler, for the collection of airborne viruses. Dr. Lednicky also recommended the method used for surface sampling for viruses. Dr. Saber Yezli, an expert in the decontamination of environmental surfaces, was a key member of the research group, and is a rising star in the field of infection control.