"Dual Use Research: H5N1 Influenza Virus and Beyond" Panel Sparks Lively Debate

The New York Academy of Sciences hosts a panel of leading scientists, publishers, and ethicists who discuss issues surrounding controversial H5N1 research.

"Dual Use Research: H5N1 Influenza Virus and Beyond" Panel Sparks Lively Debate

On February 2, the Emerging Infectious Diseases & Microbiology Discussion Group of the New York Academy of Sciences presented "Dual Use Research: H5N1 Influenza Virus and Beyond," a discussion between scientists, publishers, and ethicists that explored the myriad issues surrounding the impending publication of two controversial research studies on the avian influenza virus (H5N1).

The event featured moderator W. Ian Lipkin, MD, Center for Infection & Immunity at Columbia University, and panelists Arturo Casadevall, MD, PhD, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, and member, US National Science Advisory Board for Biosecurity (NSABB); Laurie Garrett, PhD, Council on Foreign Relations; Barbara R. Jasny, PhD, Science; Veronique Kiermer, PhD, Nature Publishing Group; Michael T. Osterholm, PhD, MPH, Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy, University of Minnesota, and member, NSABB; Peter Palese, PhD, Mount Sinai School of Medicine; Vincent Racaniello, PhD, Columbia University; and Alan S. Ruldolph, PhD, Defense Threat Reduction Agency.

Taking place during the voluntary 60-day moratorium on H5N1 research, panel members provided thoughtful, and often dichotomous, views on the issues of scientific censorship, public safety, the role of government in regulating research, the value of animal models, and the impetus for research.

Editor's note:
A multimedia report of the event, including the panel discussion in its entirety, is now available from the Academy as a free public eBriefing.


Photo: David Lubarsky Photography LLC