DNA Armageddon:Biological Warfare 21st Century

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Enabling JavaScript in your browser will allow you to experience all the features of our site. Learn how to enable JavaScript on your browser. See All Customer Reviews. Shop Books. Add to Wishlist. USD 9. Sign in to Purchase Instantly. Overview The potential harm of GM crops and animals due to accidental contamination or unexpected side effects has been much debated;however, what has not been debated is the harm that could be rendered by the intentional misuse of the technology by "mad" scientists, rogue states, terrorists or even democratic nations.

This book covers new ground on how biological weapons can be made with far greater lethality and more cheaply through the same technology that has created GM crops and animals. After reading this book it will become apparent that if terrorists are willing to reap mass destruction on the world then that can be achieved not within a matter of years but in a matter of months; this book written by a scientist explains how this can be done in a shockingly understandable way. You will not forget this book and indeed you should not forget it. Product Details About the Author.

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Average Review. Write a Review. Related Searches. In this tale of redemption, a contemporary superhero has the huevos to try and take In this tale of redemption, a contemporary superhero has the huevos to try and take down a mass-murdering techno-terrorist. This action-packed adventure follows the proud young ancestor of the original de la Vega family who now lives in the 21st View Product.

Are We Living in the Last Days? Surveys Protestant viewpoints regarding Bible prophecy on the most popular topics. Topics include: Apocalypse, Armageddon, Blood Stained. Max Sawyer's longtime girlfriend, journalist Lisa Day, has disappeared while investigating a rash of missing The expertise exists. Certainly the ability to buy expertise and bioweapons obviates the need to build laboratories, fermenters, and delivery devices.

Skeptics among the Old Guard had long pooh-poohed the prospect that any individual or group could turn bioweapons production into a cottage industry. The group had recruited scientists and built secret laboratories for bioweapons but never managed effectively to use them. Right-wing zealots in the U. But in the end the most violent action executed by an American terrorist motivated by extremist principles was the low-tech, but hideously effective, bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City.

Anthrax expert Dr. Hugh-Jones and many veterinary and agricultural authorities explain that nonhuman pathogens, including foot-and-mouth disease, would devastate the American economy without posing any health risks to the terrorists. Four plant bacteria were, for example, developed as germ-warfare weapons by the U.

Army during World War II. Even human horrors could be caused in a remarkably low-tech manner, Ronald Atlas argues. I can just go to [Africa to] an elephant outbreak and get it from the carcasses. We can increase security, but all sorts of things are out there in nature. Tommy Thompson sought to reassure the American people in an appearance on 60 Minutes in late September. The medical response to the September 11 catastrophe consisted of a program planned during the second Clinton administration, mostly by Dr.

Hamburg, who was then assistant secretary for planning and evaluation at H.

Biological warfare - Wikipedia

And more were placed on standby. The mobilization was accomplished in less than 36 hours. But this was in response to an obvious, acute event—something broadcast internationally starting right after the first plane hit the World Trade Center. It would look more like this:. At emergency rooms and clinics throughout a small city, population ,, doctors find themselves overwhelmed by a strange surge of what looks like flu cases. The patients come in with characteristic symptoms: fever, malaise, loss of appetite, chills, and muscle aches.

But many of the afflicted are children under 10—a group rarely affected seriously by influenza. Despite symptomatic treatment for the flu, the patients worsen and develop new symptoms: bone pain, dry cough, liver dysfunction, and meningitis. Some of the patients are so deranged that they run about naked, shouting incoherently. In the worst cases there are severe heart palpitations, causing the patients to writhe in agony and finally to die. The County Health Department becomes alarmed enough that it reports the situation to the C.

Not until two weeks after the start of the epidemic does the C. Since there are few, if any, sheep or goats in the area of the epidemic, the F. Local police discover an aerosolizing device in an office air-conditioning system that could have been used to release the brucella. Cases spread to eight other states, as well as to Quebec, London, and Paris—carried by travelers.

The World Health Organization issues an international alert. And the H. The human toll: people of all ages and professions, united by only one thing—they happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. This is the sort of scenario that C. Working with C. Were a brucellosis attack actually to occur, Meltzer and his colleagues might heave a sigh of relief.

The disease, after all, is easily treated and prevented with cheap, readily available antibiotics. Even untreated victims usually survive—the death rate is only 5 percent. The story would be far different if the terrorists used more lethal and more infectious microbes—for instance, inhalatory, weapons-grade, antibiotic-resistant anthrax. Or tularemia, an illness commonly found in North American wildlife and sometimes passed to hikers and campers.

Symptoms include high fever, prostration, and weight loss. In every model Meltzer plays with, timing is crucial: the longer it takes to recognize that evil is afoot, identify the microbial culprit, and mass-medicate the populace, the higher the death toll, and the greater the cost. Or if the terrorist employed a more sophisticated method of dispersal, such as loading bioweapons on a crop duster?


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But there is some difficulty. But there are simple alternatives for large-scale attacks: mounting a dispersal device on the back of a taxicab. Or venting microbes through the U. Or contaminating food in the I. There might not be a release. Would that be enough to cause panic? Consider, for example, what happened in when the residents of Surat, India, heard on the BBC that a mystery virus was loose in the city: , residents reportedly fled by train in less than 48 hours. Even when the virus was identified as the highly treatable Yersinia pestis bacteria, the panic only got worse.

Indeed, this naturally occurring outbreak threw the international community into hysteria, because the popular name for Yersinia pestis is plague. A picturesquely grim death ensues in percent of untreated pneumonic cases, the result of respiratory shock and failure. Today, plague is easily treated with inexpensive, readily available antibiotics—tetracycline or doxycycline—but thanks to vivid historical accounts, it continues to inspire its own special horror.

So far Meltzer has concentrated on scenarios involving bacteria. His mission is to persuade urban planners to conduct war games and establish a chain of command for emergency personnel. He is also trying to get medical schools to train doctors to diagnose exotic organisms the C. But members of D. On June 22 and 23, , they staged a role-playing war game with high-level government officials facing an outbreak of smallpox. The event was simulated for Oklahoma and involved Governor Frank Keating, along with federal officials, the Center for Strategic and International Studies, and other think tanks.

Their decisions would have caused a real epidemic to spread from a shopping mall to the entire nation. But in two such role-playing exercises, she has found, the lines of communication within government snarl, and then panic and terror ensue. After labeling bioweapons as W. Christopher Davis asks. Do they see what happens when a lot of people get influenza? More significant, he says, it is also a point of view that is gaining support on Capitol Hill.

But giving booster shots to the severely weakened American public-health system will be no easy, or cheap, task. For more than three decades public health at the federal, state, and municipal levels has taken budget cuts, lost valuable personnel, seen its legal and political clout diminish, and witnessed the crippling of its allied profession, medicine. Nobody knows how much it would cost to repair the infrastructure, much less bring it up to a status where it would be able to react appropriately to an epidemic.

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Steven Wolinsky. The page document details the hazards and likely uses of biological weapons, the international treaties aimed at limiting their use, and preparedness needs. David Heymann, the network can spot any unusual outbreaks of disease in the world. A computer program scans the Internet for news accounts in many languages. But any system of surveillance is only as reliable as its grassroots base. Vaccine development and production are also in a sorry state. Last year C. Fewer than 15 million doses are considered active and safe.

And the nation no longer has adequate stores of the special immunoglobulin necessary to save the lives of the roughly 1 percent of smallpox-vaccine recipients who suffer adverse reactions. In September, Secretary Thompson ordered production of 40 million doses of smallpox vaccine from a British biotechnology company, scheduled for delivery. However, as urgency increased, Thompson stepped up the deadline to and sent an inquiry to 1, other drug manufacturers asking if any of them could assist with a goal of stockpiling million doses.

Across the board the pharmaceutical options are slim. For many diseases the microbes are so lethal that the F. Few companies are eager to get into the business of working with such lethal agents. And in the case of viruses, humanity has never had much success in battling the rapidly evolving microscopic killers. There is no effective plague vaccine available. The anthrax vaccine used by the U. If it were, it would take six shots spread out over 18 months plus annual booster shots to produce immunity.

Even garden-variety vaccines are problematic right now. The nation has a shortage of tetanus vaccines, for example, a result of manufacturing problems. In September the C. For all the talk of smallpox and anthrax, microbiologist Atlas thinks influenza would be the ultimate bioterrorist weapon. The highly contagious virus mutates constantly, and in its most virulent forms can be extremely deadly.

In , before the age of jet travel, flu killed some 22 million people worldwide, sickened 10 percent of the American workforce, and killed about 3 percent of those it infected. And his fear index jumped up a notch when a team of scientists discovered this summer that by simply altering one gene from a chicken-flu virus they could turn the microbe into one that would be highly lethal in humans. Last January the Old Guard of the bioterrorism community was thrown into high anxiety by an accidental experimental finding made at Australian National University in Canberra.

Ron Jackson and Ian Ramshaw were trying to make a contraceptive by performing experiments on mice using a virus called mousepox, a rodent form of the smallpox virus. They spliced a gene for an egg surface protein into it, along with an immune-regulator gene, accidentally producing a microbe so lethal that it killed virtually every mouse.

He thinks a similar experiment might produce a nearly percent lethal smallpox. What the Soviet Biopreparat scientists were trying to accomplish with comparatively crude technologies in the s are now matters of relative ease. On October 4, British researchers from the Wellcome Trust Laboratories near Cambridge published the entire genetic sequence of Yersinia pestis, the bacterium that causes plague, noting which genes are responsible for the virulence and infectiousness of the deadly microbe.

By matching virulence genes from pathogens with their targeted compounds in humans, researchers are coming up with medical breakthroughs that could lead to powerful drugs and vaccines. But in the process they are also creating a primer for designing bugs that could infect a wider range of cell types, spread in ways not typical of their microbial species, kill cells more efficiently, and resist antibiotics and vaccines.

Even before the advent of these new scientific tools, Biopreparat scientists succeeded in creating a new species of bacterium that combines elements of anthrax with a soil microbe. The resulting chimera is resistant to all antibiotics, infects a large range of human cells, and may be able to overwhelm vaccine-induced immune responses. Biopreparat also allegedly made a form of fully antibiotic-resistant plague.

Just in the last few years scientists have made astounding discoveries.

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They have mapped the activities of several bacterial toxins down to the smallest details. A Salk Institute scientist in California is working with an essential component of artificial chromosomes, and several teams are racing to be the first to construct a completely artificial microbe. Stanford researchers have developed a neat trick for rapidly finding the genes responsible for determining which types of cells a given microbe can infect. Similarly, a Harvard Medical School group has developed ways to quickly spot genes that give microbes their virulence.

The technique would allow a scientist to, in a matter of days, turn any given microbe into its most lethal form by simply shuffling the genetic deck until a royal flush was dealt. This is a new world! Atlas agrees. Should humanity conduct certain types of experiments in the then new field of molecular biology? Is it safe? Is it right?