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Taking Stock of the Biodefense Boom

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Science  02 Sep 2011:
Vol. 333, Issue 6047, pp. 1214
DOI: 10.1126/science.333.6047.1214

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Summary

The anthrax mailings that petrified Americans soon after the 9/11 attacks a decade ago this fall, killing five people and sickening 17, led to an explosion of biodefense research in the United States. Nearly $19 billion has been spent—a huge increase over previous levels and about one-third of the entire $60 billion the country has put into biodefense preparedness. Although the influx of funds has yielded scientific insights and some new products, how much safer the country is as a result is a matter of debate.