CASE CLOSED … what really happened in the 2001 anthrax attacks?

* In his recent slideshare on the “Misuse of Biology,” the sole non-US Amerithrax adviser Les Baillie discussed Amerithrax, stealing pathogens from lab, and the consquences of a small-scale and large scale anthrax attack

Posted by Lew Weinstein on November 16, 2014

slideshare

Source: http://www.slideshare.net/RUSIEVENTS/professor-les-baillie-compatibility-mode

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5 Responses to “* In his recent slideshare on the “Misuse of Biology,” the sole non-US Amerithrax adviser Les Baillie discussed Amerithrax, stealing pathogens from lab, and the consquences of a small-scale and large scale anthrax attack”

  1. DXer said

    April 25, 2017

    Both labs confirmed that the Porton Down ‘sugar’ strains differed by only two genetic letters from the Ames Ancestor strain—a near identical matching. The researchers speculate that during the intense culturing attempts of the sugar samples in 1997, spores from the Ames Ancestor strain, which were likely to be abundant in the Porton Down military defense laboratory facilities, fell into the culture media and grew.

    Read more at: https://phys.org/news/2017-04-year-old-viable-anthrax-strain-debunked.html#jCp

  2. DXer said

    Given that Les Baillie hosted Rauf Ahmad at the Porton Down conference, did it make sense to allow him to reject the CIA’s detection of Ames anthrax at Rauf Ahmad’s lab?

    15 years after the fact, Tom Ridge on Fox News, the former Homeland Security Director from 2003-2005, says that Al Qaeda was experimenting with anthrax in animals.

    http://sendvid.com/zu3aob5h

    The CIA detected Ames in the Afghan lab but the FBI disregarded the finding. Through no fault of his own, wasn’t Dr. Baillie’s conflict of interest as massive as the conflict that John Ezzell and Terry Abshire had when they threw out Dr. Ivins’ submitted sample in February 2002? The only thing worse than the massive conflicts of interest that existed in Amerithrax? The continuing lack of transparency and accountability.

    At what point does the game of hide-the-ball played for 15 years become a great big lie that lead to the invasion of Iraq and the current mess that the world is in. Thousands dead. Billions wasted.

    Some basic questions need to be addressed before any money is flushed down the drain on prolfierating biodefense risks.

    First, what are the circumstances of the FBI’s rejection of the CIA’s detection of Ames in Afghanistan? To include who was responsible.

    Second, what was the second lab that Rauf Ahmad visited — after which he announced to Dr. Ayman Zawahiri that his targets had been achieved.

    Third, what happeend to the 340 ml. of virulent Ames that was sent from Dugway to USAMRIID on June 27, 2001?

    It is unacceptable the same cast of characters to promote biodefense spending while continuing to leave such basic questions about the Fall 2001 anthrax mailings unanswered.

    For Christian Hassell and Vahid Majidi — in guiding the DOD Laboratory Review — to continue the obfuscation is very wrong.

    The DOD review should have reached these issues — especially given that they directly involved shipments of virulent Ames from Dugway — and the issue of irradation (or not) at USAMRIID.

  3. DXer said

    Safety breaches at British laboratories handling diseases
    IAN SAMPLE
    http://www.thehindu.com/opinion/op-ed/safety-breaches-at-british-laboratories-handling-diseases/article6662308.ece

    ***

    Tom Inglesby, director of health security at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, said: “It’s very important that scientists are not punished for reporting accidents or near—accidents. That kind of punitive response will create pressures to not report. In other safety cultures, like airline safety, pilots are punished if they do not report near—misses, but not when they do report.” The HSE investigated two incidents at the MoD’s Porton Down lab near Salisbury last year. They both involved splits in isolation suits. One was at a facility housing marmosets infected with Ebola virus. The tears were reported and the damaged parts replaced. “You will get tears in safety suits. People will spill things. Those kinds of accidents are unavoidable. If they are immediately corrected and reported, the people should be rewarded. They certainly shouldn’t be punished,” said Ebright. “That’s how the system should work.” Richard Daniels, head of the HSE’s biological agents unit, said that the safety of U.K. labs was good, if not perfect. He said the regulator urged lab directors to focus on their vulnerabilties and to improve safety by bringing in fresh measures to assess how well their staff were trained, and how well their equipment was maintained. “With the likes of large organisations, Pirbright, APHA and others, we expect leadership to come from the top, because that sets the culture and the expectations below it. The danger is that if you don’t look at these things proactively, complacency can perhaps affect an organisation, because you haven’t got anything to tell you that things are going awry,” he said.

  4. DXer said

    In 2012, Les Baillie described his work for the FBI in a presentation titled “From Anthrax to Tea via sharks, self cloning, the FBI and cricket!”

    http://blogs.exeter.ac.uk/thomashoward/blog/2012/01/09/411/

    Additional background:

    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/03/080312100045.htm

    Cup Of Black Tea Could Defend Against Anthrax Threat, Research Suggests
    March 16, 2008
    Cardiff University

    Summary:

    A cup of black tea could be the next line of defense in the threat of bio-terrorism according to new international research. A new study has revealed how the humble cup of tea could well be an antidote to Bacillus anthracis — more commonly know as anthrax. Components in English breakfast tea such as polyphenols have the ability to inhibit the activity of anthrax.

    ***
    Published in the March issue of the Society for Applied Microbiology’s journal Microbiologist, Professor Baillie said: “Our research sought to determine if English Breakfast tea was more effective than a commercially available American medium roast coffee at killing anthrax.

    ***

    Professor Baillie continued: “I would suggest that in the event that we are faced with a potential bio-terror attack, individuals may want to forgo their dash of milk at least until the situation is under control.

    Countering Anthrax with Tea
    • BY JASON SIGGER
    • 03.25.08

    http://www.wired.com/2008/03/counter-anthrax/

    Comment: Yazid Sufaat’s daughter and I would scoff that tea is superior to coffee — at least in solving the whodunnit of who mailed the Fall 2001 anthrax letters. The best way to avoid the next attack is to solve the last one.

    • DXer said

      See also this report on research by Dr. Baillie, of the Naval Medical Research Center, showing that antibodies from tobacco plants protect against anthrax.

      http://osd.gov.com/osd/200503_march/DHS_IAIP_Daily_2005-03-24.pdf

      March 23, American Society for Microbiology — Antibodies from tobacco plants protect against anthrax. Scientists have produced, in tobacco plants, human antibodies that could be used to treat anthrax exposure. They reported their findings at the 2005 American Society for Microbiology Biodefense Research Meeting. To create the “plantibodies,” Les Baillie, of the Naval Medical Research Center, and his colleagues first collected the cells that make antibodies from individuals who had been vaccinated against anthrax. Then genes that encode the antibody itself were inserted into a bacterium that transfers the gene into the plant cells. “The plant makes the antibody for you in a few days,” says Baillie. The antibodies were then purified from leaves harvested from the infected plants and tested for their ability to protect mice against anthrax infection. The plant−produced antibodies were just as effective as the antibodies produced by human cells from immunized individuals. The antibodies can be used either before exposure to prevent infection or after exposure as treatment.
      Source: http://www.news−medical.net/?id=8658

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