Can we keep unsuitable staff out of anthrax labs?


By Peter Aldhous “INDIVIDUALS will be mentally alert, mentally and emotionally stable, trustworthy, physically competent, and free of unstable medical conditions,” reads the US army regulation covering scientists working on lethal bacteria, viruses and toxins. It’s hard to reconcile this description with the picture that emerges of the late Bruce Ivins, accused of killing five people in the anthrax attacks of October 2001. Documents released by the FBI suggest that Ivins, who worked on anthrax vaccines at the US Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases (USAMRIID) at Fort Detrick, Maryland,
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