Friday, July 27, 2012

Branswell On Lifting The H5N1 Research Moratorium



BSL-4 Lab Worker - Photo Credit –USAMRIID  

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Six months ago, in response to the rising chorus of concern over the biosecurity aspects of conducting H5N1 research, a 60 day moratorium was announced by a group of 39 leading scientists (see Scientists Announce 60 Day Moratorium On Some H5N1 Research).


While the research papers that originally sparked this controversy have now been published, the self-imposed moratorium remains in place.


Next week a meeting will be held in New York City of members of the Centers of Excellence for Influenza Research and Surveillance (CEIRS), and the subject of what to do about these research restrictions is expected to be part of their talks.


The inimitable Helen Branswell of the Canadian Press brings us the inside details on the difficult and controversial path ahead to undoing the H5N1 research moratorium:



As key flu scientists meet, question looms: When will bird flu studies resume?

The Canadian Press

By Helen Branswell, The Canadian Press | The Canadian Press – 42 minutes ago

Six months after leading influenza scientists announced they would voluntarily halt research into what it takes to make bird flu viruses transmit among mammals, it's still not clear when and how the cease-work order will be lifted.

(Continue . . .)


Highly recommended.