Saturday, February 11, 2012

Experimental H5N1 Mutations: A better idea

Let’s Ban Research That Makes the Bird-Flu Virus and Other Pathogens Deadlier
By John Horgan | February 6, 2012
Scientific American

Ban all research, open or classified, aimed at making pathogens deadlier. This is my “least-bad” choice, because I believe that the risks of research like the recent H5N1 experiments outweigh potential benefits. In general, I favor unrestricted research and communication, just as I favor free speech. But if scientists keep introducing more lethal pathogens into the world, the odds grow that one of them will be unleashed intentionally or accidentally. Moreover, if the U.S. keeps pursuing research into new strains of infectious disease, other nations and groups are more likely to do so as well. ....

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