Tuesday, November 29, 2011

F*cked up Science: Genetically modified Bird Flu

What's wrong with these people?

Inside a Dutch medical facility is a potentially devastating weapon that could kill millions: A genetically modified version of the H5N1 bird flu, engineered to be easily transmitted among ferrets. And the researchers who figured out how to do it would like to share their work with the world.

Science, Rebecca Boyle, Avian flu, bird flu, controversy, h5n1 avian flu, health, pandemic flu, pandemics, scientific studiesIt’s a complicated conundrum, more so than it may seem at first blush. Biosecurity experts are now debating whether published research on the engineered flu (there are a couple papers in question) could be used as a blueprint for a bioweapon. But influenza researchers argue that virologists need every weapon they can find to fight the flu, which includes studying the ways it might spread to mammals. The National Institutes of Health funded the work.

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