Thursday, June 22, 2006

Be Prepared!

Effect Measure on the current situation with H5N1:

[C]ases are appearing in small clusters, often in areas where no sick poultry can be found, or at least where no contact can be determined. About a third of the cases are in urban areas, although many city dwellers also keep birds. the latest large cluster exhibited all the marks of spread from person to person within the unfortunate extended family decimated by the virus.
So what should we do? According to this article, we should pray that our brave scientists somehow manage to thwart the terrorists who want to weaponize the flu virus:
This week in Rochester, scientists are discussing ways to better understand the flu and also how to prevent the possibility that terrorists could somehow modify flu as a bioweapon to make it even more lethal than it is already....

"Flu viruses are deadly – witness the 1918 Spanish flu which killed millions of people – and with modification, they can be made even more deadly," said Hulin Wu, Ph.D., professor in the Department of Biostatistics and Computational Biology and director of the modeling center. Wu's colleague, Martin Zand, M.D., Ph.D., co-director of the center, added that "We don't know whether flu will be weaponized; it's crucial to ask the question and to be prepared."
Indeed. And I think we need to worry about terrorists weaponizing TB and AIDS, too. If that happened, millions could die, despite the selfless efforts of drug companies and politicians to save them.

We'd better drop another couple billion dollars on Project BioShield right away. If there's anything left over, it can go to Ray Kurzweil. (Long live the new flesh!)

After all, what's the point of funding schools if your kids are just going to get killed by weaponized flu?

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