Publish H5N1 Papers, Says US Gov’t

The NIH agrees with the government advisory board’s recommendation to publish both controversial bird flu studies in full.

Jef Akst
Jef Akst

Jef (an unusual nickname for Jennifer) got her master’s degree from Indiana University in April 2009 studying the mating behavior of seahorses. After four years of diving off the Gulf...

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Apr 23, 2012

FLICKR, HOBVIAS SUDONEIGHM

National Institutes of Health director Francis Collins announced on Friday (April 20) that he and Department of Health and Human Services secretary Kathleen Sebelius agree that two recent H5N1 studies, which rendered the virus transmissible between ferrets, should be published in full. The stance mirrors the most recent recommendation of the National Science Advisory Board for Biosecurity (NSABB), which last month reversed its December suggestion to redact certain details of the studies.

“The HHS Secretary and I concur with the NSABB’s recommendation that the information in the two manuscripts should be communicated fully, and we have conveyed our concurrence to the journals considering publication of the manuscripts,” Collins wrote in a statement posted on the NIH website. “This information has clear value to national and international public health preparedness efforts and must be shared with those who are poised to realize the benefits of this research.”

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