Please Don’t Publish Flu Studies, Government requests Journals

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Photo Courtesy: natcom.org

A government advisory board has taken a first step requesting specific journals not to publish any sort of information such as the progress of biomedical experiments, details and facts pertaining to the results of such experiments — especially those related to Bird Flu —  out in the journals for the fear that terrorist can tap this information and can unleash a biomedical war – creating viruses, biochemical weapons, etc.

The explicit request from the government advisory board follows a few experiment in New Zealand and the United States that “created a highly transmissible form of a deadly flu virus that does not normally spread from one person to another”, according to a New York Times release.

Humans are usually not infected with a virus known as A (H5N1) – the same virus that causes bird flue. Only recently, Hong Kong authorities reported over 17,000 chickens dead after a H5N1 attack. The Bird Flu is believed to have infected over 30 chicken farms in Kong Kong.

The H5N1 admittedly and occasionally does affect humans too – especially those who have close contact with infected poultry in regions around Asia where this is more common. For instance, in the year 2003, 331 people all over the world died due to Bird Flu.

“The experiment’s findings state that the flu could become dangerous to the point that it can be airborne. It can be transmitted through aerosols and that’s something no one would have predicted”, says Dr. Bruce Albert – editor of the Science Journal.

The above-mentioned experiment only magnifies the deadly reach of the virus. Fearing such an event, the National Science Advisory Board for Bio Security requested “Science” and “Nature” to keep the information out since it’s sensitive and can cause problems.

The board, however, allowed the conclusions of the experiments to be published. Expecting reactions from the journalists and the scientific community, the board stated that it’s in interest of security and not realty censorship.

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