"The agricultural and food infrastructure of the United States is potentially susceptible to terrorist attack using biological pathogens. In addition to the impacts of such an attack on the economy, some animal diseases could potentially be transmitted to humans. (These diseases are known as zoonotic diseases.) Scientific and medical research on plant and animal diseases may lead to the discovery and development of new diagnostics and countermeasures, reducing the risk and impact of a successful terrorist attack."
CRS Report for Congress, RL34160