• Texas foundation wins contract to assist in fight against bioterrorism

    Southwest Foundation for Biomedical Research receives first installment of $456,216 of a $2.2 million contract to do research on Ebola and Marburg viruses, which could be used as potential bioterror weapons

  • U.S. post Office to deliver antidote in case of anthrax attack

    President Obama signed an executive order instructing the Post Office to deliver antidotes to citizens in the event of an anthrax attack; the executive order calls for armed escorts to accompany delivery personnel

  • OSU president Burns Hargis defends anthrax research cancellation decision

    Hargis had ended an anthrax vaccine research project at OSU because it would have resulted in euthanizing baboons; he says he did not bow to pressures from animal rights activists – or from the wife of billionaire T. Boone Pickens, both OSU alumni and major donors to the school.

  • Potent new biodefense technology shows promise

    Medizone International’s AsepticSure technology continues to break the “6 log” decontamination barriers, this time with two very different spore forming bacteria, Claustridium difficile and Bacillis subtilis

  • Oklahoma State rejects anthrax study over euthanasia of primates

    The U.S. National Institutes of Health wanted OSU to conduct research on treatment for anthrax; the study involves baboons, which must be destroyed after anthrax exposure to ensure they do not infect others; In April, OSU announced that animals will no longer be euthanized in teaching labs at the veterinary school; measure was the result of pressure by Madeleine Pickens, the wife of billionaire benefactor and OSU alumnus T. Boone Pickens

  • Experts call for changes in U.S. vaccine creation process

    The current U.S. vaccine-manufacturing plan was developed prior to the cold war, and has never been updated; currently, the United States grows its vaccines in eggs over the course of six to eight months, and as there has been no real financial incentive to upgrade the vaccine making process, pharmaceutical manufacturers have instead focused on more profitable medications rather than vaccines

  • Governments worry about more cases of drug-resistant H1N1

    Health officials in the United Kingdom and the United States report the likely person-to-person spread of a drug-resistant strain of H1N1; most patients thus far infected with the strain have already been immune-deficient

  • Bioterrorism poses new challenges for the health care systems worldwide

    A new book points out to one of the essential challenges bioterrorism poses: Nations’ primary health care system must be prepared properly to cope with cases of exceptional morbidity due to uncommon generators

  • UIC to develop antibiotics against potential bioterrorism agents

    The University of Illinois at Chicago receives $4 million in stimulus package funds to develop new antibiotics to treat anthrax, tularemia and plague

  • Ricin antidote ready for production

    U.K. scientists develop the first antidote to ricin poisoning; security experts say ricin — roughly 1,000 times more toxic than cyanide — could be used in a bio-terror attack; what worries experts about ricin is not only its toxicity, but its ready availability: Ricin is extracted from castor beans, which are processed throughout the world to make castor oil; the toxin is part of the waste “mash” produced when castor oil is made

  • NIAID allocated $208 million to fight emerging infectious diseases from bioterrorism

    Using its own research funds, augmented by stimulus package money, NIH awarded $208 million to two programs that support research better to understand the human immune response to emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases, including those that may be introduced into a community through acts of bioterrorism

  • Scientists track H1N1 virus for small changes which may mean big problems

    A team at the University of California-San Francisco is using cutting-edge technology to track tiny genetic changes in H1N1 virus samples from around the word; what the scientists are worried about is a big change called genetic “shift,” when there is a dramatic re-assortment and exchange of strands of genetic material that trigger hard-to-predict epidemic trajectories

  • Kent State to train lab workers for biocontainment

    The increasing number of high-containment laboratories and the constant threat from emerging diseases and bioterrorism require more extensive biosafety training of the highest caliber, and more facilities in which to offer this training

  • Tracking swine flu spread by monitoring electronic prescription records

    Rhode Island is using information supplied by pharmacies to document how much Tamiflu and other antivirals are being dispensed to patients; the information — categorized by zip codes of the pharmacies where the medicine is dispensed and the age group of the patient receiving it — is given to epidemiologists at the state health department

  • Uganda to conduct Marburg and Ebola vaccine trials

    Ebola and Marburg are viral infections that have a high mortality, killing 90 percent of victims; no effective treatment exists for these highly infectious diseases, which cause extensive internal bleeding and rapid death