Skip to comments.A brief, terrifying history of viruses escaping from labs: 70s Chinese pandemic was a lab mistake
Posted on 04/12/2014 7:23:32 PM PDT by canuck_conservative
....Virologists, using serologic and early genetic tests, soon began to suggest the cause of the reappearance was a laboratory escape of a 1949-50 virus, and as genomic techniques advanced, it became clear that this was true. By 2010, researchers published it as fact: The most famous case of a released laboratory strain is the re-emergent H1N1 influenza-A virus which was first observed in China in May of 1977 and in Russia shortly thereafter. The virus may have escaped from a lab attempting to prepare an attenuated H1N1 vaccine in response to the U.S. swine flu pandemic alert.....
In 2007, Foot and Mouth Disease appeared again in Britain, 4 kilometers from a biosafety level 4 laboratorya designation indicating the highest level of lab securitylocated at Pirbright. The strain had caused a 1967 outbreak in the United Kingdom but was not then circulating in animals anywhere. It was, however, used in vaccine manufacture at the Pirbright facility. Investigations concluded that construction vehicles had carriedmud contaminated with FMD from a defective wastewater line at Pirbright to the first farm. That outbreak identified 278 infected animals and required 1,578 animals to be culled. It disrupted U.K. agricultural production and exports and cost an estimated 200 million pounds.
Federal law bans FMD virus from the continental United States, and it is held only at the U.S. Department of Agriculture Plum Island facility off Long Island, N.Y. Currently, however, its replacement, the National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility, is under construction in Manhattan, Kan., under the aegis of the Department of Homeland Security. Moving FMD research to the agricultural heartland of the United States was opposed by many groups, including the Government Accountability Office, but Homeland Security decided on the Kansas location. In upgrading facilities to counter the threat of agro-bioterrorism, the department is increasing the risk....
(Excerpt) Read more at news.nationalpost.com ...
Its a flu virus so deadly that scientists once halted research on the disease because governments feared it might be used by terrorists to stage a biological attack.
Remember the accidental release of SMALLPOX back in 1978 England?
I sort of remember the Chinese-Soviet episode. I believe there was a report on AP or UPI (about all there was stateside then) about some kind of outbreak. Facts were sparse and detail non-existent. Further, I believe there was quite a bit of tension between the commie states at that time and skirmishes were not unknown. I always thought somebody deliberately used chemical agents and had some backdraft but, who knew?
Interesting - thanks!
The other factor is we assume all these things were accidental. We are dealing with govts here.
Just take the secrets withheld from the public in an average season of “24” and double it, and you have the terrifying reality in which we live.
” Department of Homeland Security. Moving FMD research to the agricultural heartland of the United States ...”
No doubt overseen by Capt. Tripps...
The Big Bang Theory: Bernadette and her colleagues have a pact to never admit that they actually crossed Ebola with the common cold when a petri dish of a genetically modified super virus went missing.
I think the scariest lab boo-boo that killed a LOT of folks came at a Russian weapons lab:
They were working with weaponized anthrax and some vodka-addled worker forgot to replace some facility filters —devices that sealed the atmosphere inside the lab with the air of the nearby village.
Something over 200 bewildered civilians died, and the Soviet authorities lied their as*es off about it, of course.
Now our gummint is so dirty that I have NO DOUBT GayMuzzie’s henchmen would do the same thing...
And I worked with quite a few loony tune MD/PhD’s when I worked in R&D.
It’s just a matter of time.
Exactly correct —I, too, read Alibek’s book with considerable consternation.
I vaguely remember that the Soviets had built the Sverdlvosk facility using plans captured from the Japanese Unit 731, who had a very advanced bio program there until being displaced by the invading Soviets.
In that incident they’d had been playing around with their most powerful strain of Anthrax:
The tech who had removed the filters did make a notation in the logbooks, but it went un-noticed by the supervisor in charge of the next shift of workers.
They simply turned all the fans with effectively no barrier to the outside world.
Across a nearby river from the lab was a ceramic factory crowded with innocent workers, and within a week all those who’d inhaled even the tiniest particles were all dead.
They blamed it all on “infected meat” or something.
I left out that Unit 731 had been in MANCHURIA, and was displaced from there by the Sovs.
Just how do you say, “Ooops!” in Mandarin?
The problem is that they are apparently not the only ones to slip up.
You want egg roll with the Flu?
You want egg roll with the Flu?
Yeah, I’ll take a Big Breakfast....
There is, or was, an island named Vozrozhdeniya in the Aral Sea wherein certain experiments were conducted. I say “was” because due to the other idiotic environmental projects the Soviets conducted, that “island” now has a land bridge. And so anything that was on it, now can be ferried off by any animals who carry it. And has been. Pleasant dreams.
A Resident Evil plot. Also 28 days later plot.
“I’m really good at killing people.
I read there was an extremely high incidence in the feral animal population of Francisella tulerensis near that island, almost epidemic in nature.
Ping! (Thanks, canuck_conservative!)
We are from the Gov't lab that poisoned you, We are here to help.
Thanks for the ping!
Post to me or FReep mail to be on/off the Bring Out Your Dead ping list.
The purpose of the Bring Out Your Dead ping list (formerly the Ebola ping list) is very early warning of emerging pandemics, as such it has a high false positive rate.
So far the false positive rate is 100%.
At some point we may well have a high mortality pandemic, and likely as not the Bring Out Your Dead threads will miss the beginning entirely.
*sigh* Such is life, and death...
I read an article in Washingtonian magazine back in the 70’s Ft. Dietrich had an incident with variant of SV-40 (Simian vacuolating virus 40). A worker, Asa Gordon, stumbled in the parking lot on the way in and scuffed his knuckle, breaking the skin and causing a slight abrasion. He worked with the virus in a containment chamber via arm long gloves. After he left work a routine safety check detected a break in the gloves and traces of human blood. The race was on to find who worked that station.
In the meantime Asa went home and got ready to go to a group dinner at a local restaurant. He already was starting to feel “funny”.When he got there the restaurant was closed and the manager met him at the door and said the dinner was canceled and he should go home. He went home and started to get sick. He called for medical help and was taken to a hospital in Frederick MD. He was gravely ill at that time.
Government personnel showed up and had the floor he was on evacuated and all nurses and doctors checked for any symptoms. His room was sealed and two technicians monitored his conditions remotely till he died. His body was sealed in a special container. All equipment in the room had similar treatment. The floor and walls were pulled off and taken away to be incinerated.
While the Washingtonian magazine was doing research about the story all records of Asa Gordon were systematically destroyed. When they first started there were no records beyond the 6th grade. After that even those records disappeared. I believe someone at the hospital tipped the magazine about him. From time of contamination to death by a raging cancer seems to be about 48hrs. Apparently the virus wasn't airborne and only transmitted by contact with body fluids, similar to Ebola
I am taking this from memory so my time line may be off a bit but the name and the virus are correct.
You’re Welcome, Alamo-Girl!
FMD is in North America. My grandfather remembered it.
We just shut up and shovel better.
Egg Flu Young?
There are issues involving frozen bodies in the tundra and possible exposure to things like Spanish Flu and Smallpox