Anthrax bacteria. (Photo: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
Up to 75 scientists who work at a US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention biosecurity lab in Atlanta may have been exposed to anthrax, because researchers there did not follow procedures for inactivating the deadly and highly contagious bacteria.
None of the scientists at the federal lab have symptoms, but some are being treated with antibiotics “out of an abundance of caution,” a CDC spokesperson told Reuters.
From the New York Times:
The lapse occurred sometime from June 6 to June 13. Workers who were not wearing appropriate protective gear moved samples of the highly infectious bacteria that they believed had been deactivated. The agency said in a statement that procedures used in two laboratories in Atlanta, where the C.D.C. is based, may have “aerosolized the spores,” essentially pushing active parts of the bacteria into the air. The exposure was discovered June 13, when the bacterial plates were to be disposed of, and live B. anthrasis colonies, or anthrax bacteria, were found on them, the agency said. The plates had tested negative for the bacteria at the time they were distributed to the labs, the agency said.
"Up to 75 C.D.C. Scientists May Have Been Exposed to Anthrax" [NYT]
Reuters has a related early report with additional details.
Writing in Slate, Cathy “Weapons of Math Destruction” O’Neill, a skeptical data-scientist, describes the ways that Big Data intersects with ethical considerations.
Our pals at surreal clothiers Imaginary Foundation bring us this fine enamel pin emblazoned with an essential insight of the ages, captured by a simple Venn diagram. Just $10!
In his weekly address, President Barack Obama this week pledged $4 billion in federal funding for computer science education in schools throughout the nation.
Plastic is so 2013. You don’t want to buy something only to throw it away or lose it and barely care. You like nice things and want to hang onto them. The Plazmatic lighter here is a high quality, high tech alternative to the typical cheap, plastic lighter you get at the old gas station. […]
Real engineers build things. Super cool engineers build things with their hands and fingers, like our engineering forefathers did. No idea where to even begin to do that? This step by step Arduino course is now 92% off and is going to get you up and running, from zero to hero, in no time. So […]
How do Google and YouTube really work? It turns out, Python kind of runs things around those parts. And with this bootcamp, you’ll get whipped into shape and ready to start programming yourself. Whether you’re a Python pro and just want to sharpen your skills, or a total tech newbie with little or no coding […]