Wednesday, June 27, 2012
Jim Sensenbrenner (Republican, Wisconsin) today said that the lack of a cohesive policy for handling risky research funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and other federal agencies could necessitate new laws, a situation that researchers have been trying to avoid. “I prefer not to pursue legislation on this issue, with the hopes the scientific community can create its own approach. But failing a consequential … policy, Congressional action could be required,” Sensenbrenner told Nature in a statement.
The second of the controversial papers showing that H5N1, or ‘bird flu’, can spread through the air between mammals was published last week, providing some closure to the months-long debate about the work and whether its publication would result in the proliferation of dangerous viruses and increased risk of an accidental or intentional release. Sensenbrenner says not enough work has been done to ensure that such controversies don’t arise again.
Posted by Michele Kearney at 4:40 PM