News & AnalysisBiosecurity

In the Eye of the Storm, Two Rivals, Two Strategies

Science  06 Jan 2012:
Vol. 335, Issue 6064, pp. 21
DOI: 10.1126/science.335.6064.21

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Summary

Ron Fouchier, one of the two influenza researchers whose work has triggered a debate on the limits of scientific freedom, welcomed reporters to his lab at Erasmus MC in Rotterdam last month and helped the center's spokespeople prepare statements in Dutch and English on why he created what he believes to be a virus with the potential to cause a pandemic and why the full details of the study—which is under review in Science—should be published. Yoshihiro Kawaoka, meanwhile, didn't respond to requests for comment; it was hard to know whether he was at his lab at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, where his H5N1 study now under review at Nature was done, or at the University of Tokyo's Institute of Medical Science, where he has an appointment as well. Some scientists say that may reflect different personalities and backgrounds.