facebook
twitter
rss
account
search
search
 

Problems reported in U.S. germ laboratory

June 13, 2012 at 3:43 PM   |   Comments

ATLANTA, June 13 (UPI) -- A U.S. bioterror germ lab has had ongoing problems with airflow systems designed to help prevent the release of infectious agents, government documents show.

The problems involve Biosafety Level 3 labs at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, USA Today reported Tuesday.

The labs are used for experiments involving anthrax, dangerous strains of influenza, the SARS coronavirus and other microbes that could possibly be used as bioweapons.

In February, air from inside a potentially contaminated lab briefly flowed out into a "clean" corridor while a group of visitors who weren't wearing any protective gear were touring the facility, internal CDC e-mails showed.

While the agency said no one had been infected, one expert says the incident represents a major violation of laboratory operating standards.

CDC documents about problems at the labs "raise serious concerns," Rutgers University biosafety expert Richard Ebright said. "There appear to be significant irregularities."

CDC engineers have expressed concerns about the air containment systems since at least 2010, USA Today reported.

The CDC has declined to respond to questions submitted in writing about the problems inside the high-containment labs, the newspaper said.

© 2012 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
Most Popular
1
Massive sunspot sending violent flares toward Earth Massive sunspot sending violent flares toward Earth
2
Google exec breaks skydive record with dive from near-space Google exec breaks skydive record with dive from near-space
3
Powerful new microscope sees cell division in real time Powerful new microscope sees cell division in real time
4
Astronomers discover worst-smelling comet in space Astronomers discover worst-smelling comet in space
5
Stone tools reveal Ice Age settlement in the Andes Stone tools reveal Ice Age settlement in the Andes
Trending News
Around the Web
x
Feedback