HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Biological warfare: an emerging threat in the 21st century

Why is biophysicist Steven Block so concerned about smallpox?

After all, more than 20 years have passed since the World Health Organization (WHO) announced the eradication of this highly contagious and incurable disease.

``Simply put, smallpox represents a direct threat to the entire world,`` says Block, a professor of biological sciences and applied physics at Stanford.

He points out that, although the disease has been eliminated in the wild, frozen stocks of smallpox virus are still maintained by the governments of the United States and Russia.

If rogue politicians or terrorists were to get hold of the remaining supplies, ``the consequences could be disastrous,`` he warns.

But Block is haunted by more than the threat of a smallpox attack.

He points to some two dozen conventional biological agents - including anthrax, Ebola and typhus - plus an unknown number of genetically engineered organisms that terrorists could unleash on an unsuspecting public.

``We`re tempted to say that nobody in their right mind would ever use these things,`` he says, ``but not everybody is in their right mind!``

Block paints a disturbing picture of the international bioterrorist threat in an article published in the Jan./Feb. issue of American Scientist magazine.

His expertise in biological warfare stems from his work with JASON, an organization of primarily academic scientists who dedicate a portion of their time to solving national security problems. Members of JASON often serve as consultants to the Defense Department and other U.S. agencies

``In my opinion,`` he writes, ``the terrorist threat is very real, and it`s about to get worse.``

Block argues that the United States and other developed countries should be doing more to prevent the spread of biological weaponry, which he calls ``a serious threat to peace in the twenty-first century.``

He saves his harshest criticism for his fellow biologists, most of whom have remained silent on the issue
'"/>

Contact: Mark Shwartz
mshwartz@stanford.edu
650-723-9296
Stanford University
11-Jan-2001


Page: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7

Related biology news :

1. Biological oceanographers examine regime shifts in complex marine ecosystems
2. Biological computer diagnoses cancer and produces drug in a test tube
3. Biological cause of one form of blindness identified by SLU researchers
4. Biological trick reveals key step in melatonins regulation
5. Journal of Gerontology: Biological Sciences to offer forum
6. Biological clock more influenced by temperature than light
7. Systematics at a Crossroads: Biological and Philosophical Arguments
8. Biological and chemical agents in terrorism examined at AAN Annual Meeting
9. Biological Challenges to Humanity: Emerging and Re-emerging Pathogens
10. Biological evidence can persuade people to change unhealthy habits
11. Biological clock gene in bees found to have another function

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:5/6/2017)... 5, 2017 RAM Group , ... new breakthrough in biometric authentication based on a ... properties to perform biometric authentication. These new sensors are ... created by Ram Group and its partners. This sensor ... supply chains and security. Ram Group is a ...
(Date:4/18/2017)... , April 18, 2017  Socionext Inc., a global expert in ... media edge server, the M820, which features the company,s hybrid codec ... provided by Tera Probe, Inc., will be showcased during the upcoming ... NAB show at the Las Vegas Convention ... Click ...
(Date:4/13/2017)... 13, 2017 According to a new market research ... Analytics, Identity Administration, and Authorization), Service, Authentication Type, Deployment Mode, Vertical, and ... is expected to grow from USD 14.30 Billion in 2017 to USD ... 17.3%. ... MarketsandMarkets Logo ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:10/10/2017)... , Oct. 10, 2017 International research firm Parks Associates ... will speak at the TMA 2017 Annual Meeting , October 11 ... in the residential home security market and how smart safety and security ... Parks Associates: ... "The residential security ...
(Date:10/9/2017)... , Oct. 9, 2017  BioTech Holdings announced ... by which its ProCell stem cell therapy prevents ... ischemia.  The Company, demonstrated that treatment with ProCell ... limbs saved as compared to standard bone marrow ... HGF resulted in reduction of therapeutic effect.  ...
(Date:10/9/2017)... ... October 09, 2017 , ... ... October 5, 2017, in the medical journal, Epilepsia, Brain Sentinel’s SPEAC® System ... standard, video EEG, in detecting generalized tonic-clonic seizures (GTCS) using surface electromyography ...
(Date:10/6/2017)... ... 06, 2017 , ... The HealthTech Venture Network (HTVN) is ... fourth annual Conference where founders, investors, innovative practitioners and collaborators are invited to ... showcasing early stage digital health and med tech companies. , This day-long event ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: