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Biological Terrorism

Eleanor M Summerhill, Gary W Hoyle, Sven-Eric Jordt, Bronwen J Jugg, James G Martin, Sadis Matalon, Steven E Patterson, David J Prezant, Alfred M Sciuto, Erik R Svendsen, Carl W White, Livia Veress
This report is based upon the proceedings from the Inhalational Lung Injury Workshop jointly sponsored by the American Thoracic Society (ATS) and the National Institute of Health (NIH)/National Institute of Neurologic Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) Countermeasures Against Chemical Threats (CounterACT) program on May 21, 2013 in Philadelphia, PA. The CounterACT program facilitates research leading to the development of new and improved medical countermeasures for chemical threat agents. The workshop was initiated by the Terrorism and Inhalational Disasters (TID) Section of the Environmental, Occupational, and Population Health Assembly (EOPH) of the ATS...
April 18, 2017: Annals of the American Thoracic Society
Harald De Cauwer, Francis J M P Somville, Marieke Joillet
This statement paper deals with the key role an neurologist plays in the management of victims of chemical warfare/terrorist attacks. Because terrorist factions have expanded the war zone creating a worldwide risk of terrorist attacks, not only limited to some conflict zones in the Middle East, neurologists in all countries/regions have to be prepared for disaster response. The scope of this paper is to provide guidelines for the neurological management of victims of chemical and biological terrorist attacks...
March 25, 2017: Acta Neurologica Belgica
Evan L Pannkuk, Albert J Fornace, Evagelia C Laiakis
PURPOSE: Exposure of the general population to ionizing radiation has increased in the past decades, primarily due to long distance travel and medical procedures. On the other hand, accidental exposures, nuclear accidents, and elevated threats of terrorism with the potential detonation of a radiological dispersal device or improvised nuclear device in a major city, all have led to increased needs for rapid biodosimetry and assessment of exposure to different radiation qualities and scenarios...
January 12, 2017: International Journal of Radiation Biology
Ali S Al-Shareef, Loui K Alsulimani, Hattan M Bojan, Taha M Masri, Jennifer O Grimes, Michael S Molloy, Gregory R Ciottone
BACKGROUND: Makkah (Mecca) is a holy city located in the western region of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Each year, millions of pilgrims visit Makkah. These numbers impact both routine health care delivery and disaster response. This study aimed to evaluate hospitals' disaster plans in the city of Makkah. METHODS: Study investigators administered a questionnaire survey to 17 hospitals in the city of Makkah. Data on hospital characteristics and three key domains of disaster plans (general evaluation of disaster planning, structural feasibility of the hospitals, and health care worker knowledge and training) were collated and analyzed...
February 2017: Prehospital and Disaster Medicine
Jean Armengaud
The intentional use by terrorists of biological toxins as weapons has been of great concern for many years. Among the numerous toxins produced by plants, animals, algae, fungi, and bacteria, ricin is one of the most scrutinized by the media because it has already been used in biocrimes and acts of bioterrorism. Improving the analytical toolbox of national authorities to monitor these potential bioweapons all at once is of the utmost interest. MS/MS allows their absolute quantitation and exhibits advantageous sensitivity, discriminative power, multiplexing possibilities, and speed...
January 2017: Proteomics
Klaus Jaffe
W.D. Hamilton's Inclusive Fitness Theory explains the conditions that favor the emergence and maintenance of social cooperation. Today we know that these include direct and indirect benefits an agent obtains by its actions, and through interactions with kin and with genetically unrelated individuals. That is, in addition to kin-selection, assortation or homophily, and social synergies drive the evolution of cooperation. An Extended Inclusive Fitness Theory (EIFT) synthesizes the natural selection forces acting on biological evolution and on human economic interactions by assuming that natural selection driven by inclusive fitness produces agents with utility functions that exploit assortation and synergistic opportunities...
2016: SpringerPlus
Robert Peckham
This paper adopts a socio-historical perspective to explore when, how and why the eradication of poliomyelitis has become politicised to the extent that health workers and security personnel are targeted in drive-by shootings. Discussions of the polio crisis in Afghanistan and Pakistan have tended to focus on Taliban suspicions of a US-led public health intervention and the denunciation of 'modernity' by Islamic 'extremists'. In contrast, this paper considers a broader history of indigenous hostility and resistance to colonial immunisation on the subcontinent, suggesting how interconnected public health and political crises today have reactivated the past and created a continuity between events...
July 22, 2016: Global Public Health
Divashree Sharma, Ambrish Mishra, Vilas Newaskar, Ankit Khasgiwala
INTRODUCTION: The contrived and deliberate use of pathogenic strains of micro-organisms such as bacteria, viruses or their toxins to spread life-threatening diseases on a mass scale with the aim to devastate the population of an area is referred to as 'bioterrorism'. RISK ASSESSMENT: The threat of bioterrorism is higher than ever. It is now a well established fact that the capability to create immense panic and unimaginable fear has allured the terrorists for the despicable use of biological agents for causing terror attacks...
June 2016: Journal of Maxillofacial and Oral Surgery
Jennifer Dunnick, Robert P Olympia, Robert Wilkinson, Jodi Brady
OBJECTIVES: The aim of the study was to determine the compliance of urgent care centers in the United States with published recommendations for office-based disaster preparedness. METHODS: An electronic questionnaire was distributed to urgent care center administrators as identified by the American Academy of Urgent Care Medicine directory. RESULTS: One hundred twenty-two questionnaires of the 872 distributed were available for analysis (14% usable response rate)...
May 2016: Pediatric Emergency Care
Rachael O Oduyemi, Matthew Ayegboyin, Kabiru K Salami
The 2014 Ebola virus disease (EVD) outbreak was officially declared in the West Africa region by the World Health Organization (WHO) on 23 March 2014. This first episode of EVD in Nigeria on 20 July 2014 raised more intense panic globally than the seven occurrences of the disease in Zaire. Although Nigeria was declared Ebola free by the WHO within 3 months, it is imperative to understand people's perceptions of the disease in the country. A discussion of peoples' perception of EVD in Nigeria is the aim of this article...
June 2016: International Journal of Nursing Practice
Michael F Pesko, Christopher F Baum
We use single equation and system instrumental variable models to explore if individuals smoke during times of stress (the motivation effect) and if they are successful in self-medicating short-term stress (the self-medication effect). Short-term stress is a powerful motivator of smoking, and the decision to smoke could trigger biological feedback that immediately reduces short-term stress. We use data on self-reported smoking and stress from 240,388 current and former smokers. We instrument short-term stress with temporal distance from September 11, 2001 (using date of interview)...
September 2016: Economics and Human Biology
James M Feeney, Kristina Ziegler, Jessica M Armstrong, David Shapiro
UNLABELLED: September 11, 2001 saw the dawn of the US-led global war on terror, a combined diplomatic, military, social, and cultural war on terrorist activities. Chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, and high-yield explosives (CBRNE), as a group of tactics, are often the preferred weapons of terrorists across the globe. We undertook a survey of US medical schools to determine what their self-reported level of training for terrorist events encompasses during the four years of undergraduate medical education...
November 2015: Connecticut Medicine
(no author information available yet)
Significant strides have been made over the past 10 to 15 years to develop medical countermeasures (MCMs) to address potential disaster hazards, including chemical, biological, radiologic, and nuclear threats. Significant and effective collaboration between the pediatric health community, including the American Academy of Pediatrics, and federal partners, such as the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Federal Emergency Management Agency, National Institutes of Health, Food and Drug Administration, and other federal agencies, over the past 5 years has resulted in substantial gains in addressing the needs of children related to disaster preparedness in general and MCMs in particular...
February 2016: Pediatrics
George Edafese Alakpa, John W Collins
BACKGROUND: The department of defense's FM 3-11 is among the military's field manuals for preparing for, reacting to and recovering from chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear attacks. Since post 9-11, U.S. military service members have been deployed in the global war on terrorism. This study attempted to determine the effectiveness of the FM 3-11 in detecting, deterring or preventing a human-borne with bioagent (HBBA) terrorist breach at an entry control point (ECP). METHOD: This time-specific, cross-sectional study disseminated a validated survey tool with Cronbach's α > 0...
2015: Military Medical Research
George Edafese Alakpa, John W Collins
BACKGROUND: The global war on terrorism has prompted an increase in the deployment of security personnel from multi-national forces on foreign lands, especially in places where known terrorist groups are based. The aim of this study was to obtain U.S. military and security personnel's perceptions of the possibility of encountering a human-borne with bioagent (HBBA) terrorist at an entry control point (ECP). METHODS: This study was a mixed-method, cross-sectional, survey-based, time-limited study...
2015: Military Medical Research
Anna Mathesz, Sándor Valkai, Orsolya Sipos, Balázs Stercz, Béla Kocsis, Dóra Szabó, András Dér
INTRODUCTION: In the medical diagnostics of bacteria, the rapid detection of pathogenic microorganisms from body fluids is one of the most important tasks. The majority of the modern measuring techniques are based on specific labels bound to the bacteria. However, this strategy usually assumes a rather time-consuming procedure involving several steps (e.g., the widely used enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay normally consists of 5 consecutive steps). Hence, there is an urgent need for the elaboration of rapid, "label-free" techniques, that are often based on Lab-on-a-chip devices...
December 27, 2015: Orvosi Hetilap
Parker Crutchfield
Moral bioenhancement is the potential practice of manipulating individuals' moral behaviors by biological means in order to help resolve pressing moral issues such as climate change and terrorism. This practice has obvious ethical implications, and these implications have been and continue to be discussed in the bioethics literature. What have not been discussed are the epistemological implications of moral bioenhancement. This article details some of these implications of engaging in moral bioenhancement. The argument begins by making the distinction between moral bioenhancement that manipulates the contents of mental states (e...
July 2016: Bioethics
Ofia Hodoh, Cham E Dallas, Paul Williams, Andrew M Jaine, Curt Harris
OBJECTIVE: A predictive system was developed and tested in a series of exercises with the objective of evaluating the preparedness and effectiveness of the multiagency response to food terrorism attacks. DESIGN: A computerized simulation model, Risk Reduction Effectiveness and Capabilities Assessment Program (RRECAP), was developed to identify the key factors that influence the outcomes of an attack and quantify the relative reduction of such outcomes caused by each factor...
2015: American Journal of Disaster Medicine
Nick Dawnay, Rebecca Hughes, Denise Syndercombe Court, Nicola Duxbury
Identifying individual species or determining species' composition in an unknown sample is important for a variety of forensic applications. Food authentication, monitoring illegal trade in endangered species, forensic entomology, sexual assault case work and counter terrorism are just some of the fields that can require the detection of the biological species present. Traditional laboratory based approaches employ a wide variety of tools and technologies and exploit a number of different species specific traits including morphology, molecular differences and immuno-chemical analyses...
January 2016: Forensic Science International. Genetics
Yoshihito Fujinami, Junji Hosokawa-Muto, Natsuko Mizuno
This study describes the validation of sampling techniques used to detect biological warfare agents used in terror attacks. For this purpose, we tested the efficiencies of different sampling media and extraction solutions for the recovery of bacterial pathogens. We first used Bacillus cereus ATCC 4342 spores as a surrogate for highly pathogenic B. anthracis to compare recovery efficiencies of spores from four different surfaces. We used three different types of sampling swabs and four different solutions to extract spores from the swabs...
December 2015: Forensic Science International
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