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Biotech Researchers Told to Think About Bioterror

Biotechnology researchers should do more to ensure their research cannot be misused for terrorism but government regulation of the science is the wrong way to go, a committee of U.S. experts said on Wednesday. The report from the National Research Council recommends that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services create an independent National Science Advisory Board for Biodefense to advise on the risks and benefits of new technology such as genetic engineering. The report, written by a committee of scientists, legal experts and ethicists, notes that the traditional way scientists share information — in openly published journals, at meetings and on the Internet — could be abused by people seeking to make biological weapons. “We are working with legitimate scientists doing legitimate biotechnology … in order to reduce the risk of good things being used for evil,” David Franz, a biodefense expert who served on the committee, told a news conference. Full Story

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