Progress in Rapid Detection Identification of Unknown Human and Agricultural Pathogens [open pdf - 2MB]
"The biological revolution is providing new knowledge on individual life forms and their related biochemistry, on how living things interact with each other, and on new means to measure and quantify their biological properties. This knowledge is rapidly changing medicine, agricultural, environmental practice, and public health. The collective effects of this revolution are influencing qualities of human life and behavior in ways never before imagined. However, along with the positive aspects of this revolution, come potential negative aspects include, to name a few, an increased potential for human plagues caused by increased rates of human contact and resistance to antibiotics, agricultural plagues exacerbated by extensive use of single-genetic-strain crops and livestock, and purposefully induced plagues of human or agricultural pathogens. […]. Much of the international medical and agricultural industries' research is directed to the detection and identification of pathogens and to understanding their biological behavior. A consequence of this knowledge is the availability of increasingly effective vaccines, curative agents, and detection systems. In particular, these efforts are leading to pathogen detection systems that are lower in cost, more bio-chemically specific, more accurate, faster, smaller, less demanding of infrastructure, and more accessible to more people than ever before. The purpose of this paper is to describe recent progress in developing rapidly acting, specific, and low cost detection systems for a very wide variety of pathogens and their related agents. The reasons and procedures for the purposeful uses of biochemical and chemical agents, by military or terrorists, is discussed more thoroughly elsewhere."
United Department of Energy Office of Scientific and Technical Information:http://www.osti.gov/
24th Session of the International Seminars on Planetary Emergencies Erice, Italy August 19 - 24,1999