Saturday, April 7, 2012

Dutch government wants to block the publication of a controversial Killer Bird Flu

The Dutch government wants to block the publication of a controversial article on a deadly bird flu strain engineered by the Rotterdam Erasmus Medical Centre to prevent the information from falling into the hands of terrorists.

Last week the US National Science Advisory Board for Biosecurity dropped its opposition to the publication of two articles that were to appear in two leading scientific journals, Science and Nature. Earlier this week, US scientists who conducted similar research announced their results at an international conference. The Dutch Economy Ministry first wants the Rotterdam researched to apply for an export permit.

The Dutch research team, led by Ron Fouchier, caused controversy last year because it had developed a bird flu strain that could be transmitted by air. Though the lab research involved ferrets, the new strain could conceivably also infect people. Mr Fouchier described the virus as “probably one of the most dangerous viruses one can make.” Soon after Japanese-American researchers reached the same conclusion. Read More