• Boeing shows biological detection UAV

    UAVs have been performing more and more military and homeland security missions; Boeing demonstrates the use of its ScanEagle UAV in detecting, intercepting, and flying through simulated biological plumes or clouds to collect airborne agents

  • U.S. water supply contaminated by pharmaceuticals

    There are 302 million people in the United States, but over the past five years, the number of U.S. prescriptions rose 12 percent to a record 3.7 billion, while nonprescription drug purchases reached 3.3 billion; ingredients of these medications find their way to, and contaminate, the U.S. water supply; federal, state, and local governments do not regulate medical discharges into drinking water

  • U.S. smallpox preparedness improves, even if not quite according to plan

    The number of people vaccinated is vastly lower than President Bush projected, but public health experts say that there are enough healthcare workers inoculated to respond to an outbreak and enough vaccine on hand to get more protected, along with anyone else exposed to the disease

  • Taming food poisoning and bioterrorism toxins

    Rutgers researchers offer new insights into how plant toxin ricin kills cells; insights could help scientists develop drugs to counteract poisonings, reducing the threat of ricin as a bioterror weapon

  • HSDW conversation with Marion Nestle

    Professor Nestle on food safety in a globalized economy, the threat of bioterrorism, government regulation of the industry, and genetic modification

  • New sensor detects airborne pathogens

    MIT lab develops an advanced sensor for airborne pathogen; current sensors take at least twenty minutes to detect harmful bacteria or viruses in the air, but the PANTHER sensors can perform detection and identification in less than three minutes

  • Color-coded map identifies cities at risk from bioterrorism

    Vulnerability to bioterrorism involves three dimensions of risk — social aspects, natural hazards, and construction of the city and its infrastructure’ new map captures these variables as they apply to U.S. cities

  • FDA needs to move with the times

    The FDA tasks and responsibilities grow as its budget and resources are cut; FDA commissioner says agency needs to adapt to changing safety concerns and technological advances in both industries

  • Congress urges companies to do more on food safety

    There are 303,556,795 million people in the United States, according the U.S. Census Bureau (the figure is accurate for yesterday, 3 March); of these, 76 million people — that is, 25 percent — get sick every year with some sort of foodborne illness; 5,000 die; as food imports increase, these grim figures increase apace; Congress wants industry to be more diligent

  • Avalanche of drugs, scarcely any oversight, I

    More and more drugs are imported by U.S. drug makers from China, then re-labeled and sold in the United States; even when the drugs are made in the United States, more and U.S. drug makers purchase the drug ingredients in China; trouble is, the FDA does not have the resources to inspect these Chinese manufacturers to see whether they adhere to U.S. safety standards; the result: U.S. consumers become ill and die

  • Worrying about wrong threat weakens U.S. bioterrorism preparedness

    Science writer says that the worry about man-made pathogens (or “designer” pathogens) is misplaced; preoccupation with artificial germs has led the government to de-emphasize “one-bug-one-drug” strategy in favor of “broad spectrum technology” aiming to boost the body’s innate, or general, immunity; experts question wisdom of strategy

  • MPRI to help CDC prepare for disasters

    Simulation and virtualization are becoming more popular as tools for preparedness; MPRI, a subsidiary of L-3 company, will use its simulation and training expertise to help CDC prepare for all-hazard disasters, including bioterrorism and pandemic outbreaks

  • ICx to develop battlefield biodetection device

    ICx will use the research and development capabilities of Mesosystems Technologies in New Mexico, a company it had acquired in 2005, to develop a biodetection system to be used on the battlefield; new device will be made for continuous air monitoring in outdoor settings

  • AMTRAK buys explosive detectors from Smiths Detection

    AMTRAK will use the SABRE 4000 to screen passengers, carry-on baggage at train stations and on trains for explosives

  • Chinese dumplings sold in Japan poisoned on purpose

    Japan claims that made-in-China frozen dumplings which caused ten Japanese to fall ill, were contaminated on purpose with a highly toxic organophoshate pesticide methamidophos; Japan, China investigate