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March 30, 2012

Biosecurity panel reconvenes to reexamine controversial bird flu studies

A bid from some quarters in the U.S. to resolve the ongoing controversy over two unpublished bird flu studies will begin to play out over the next two days as government biosecurity advisers reconvene to reconsider the issue. The National Science Advisory Board for Biosecurity will meet Thursday and Friday in Washington, D.C., to go over revised versions of the two studies and hear about the work from their principal authors, noted flu virologists Ron Fouchier of Erasmus Medical Centre in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, and Yoshihiro Kawaoka of the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Then the group will have to decide whether to advise the U.S. government to withdraw its objection to full publication of the papers, continue to press for publication in abbreviated form or suggest the studies should not be published at all. Read More

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