I’m Michael Stebbins; my group focuses on biosecurity issues and national policy as it relates to health and biological sciences. These two areas have melded together in a number of ways since the anthrax attacks in 2001. First, there was a dramatic increase in research on bioterrorism threat agents including anthrax, tularemia, and plague. With this increase came the daunting fact that we have also dramatically increased the number of scientists who have access to and the knowledge of how to handle these agents. Second, what we have not seen is a serious commitment to increasing our nation’s public health infrastructure to handle emergencies, including the threat of a pandemic outbreak of influenza. This is absolutely essential, not just for the nation’s national security as it pertains to bioterrorism, but for all public health emergencies.
We have several active projects that address these important issues and will update you on them here. Please visit our main page for more information on the biosecurity group. Our bios can be found here.