After a self-imposed one-year moratorium on this research, several laboratories around the world announced that they will restart the work in early 2013.
The FBI is actively responding to these developments in the scientific community.
"The law enforcement-security community seeks to strengthen the existing dialogue with researchers," William So of the FBI's Biological Countermeasures Unit says in the study.
"Science flourishes because of the open and collaborative atmosphere for sharing and discussing ideas. The FBI believes this model can do the same for our two communities[and] create effective safeguards for science and national interests."
The scientists and engineers who conduct nanoscale research have the ability and responsibility to consider the public safety aspects of their research and to act to protect society when necessary, argues Eggleson.
"The relationship between science and society is an uneasy one, but it is undeniable on the whole and not something any individual can opt out of in the name of progress for humanity's benefit," she says.
"Thought about dual-use, and action when appropriate, is inherent to socially responsible practice of nanobiomedical science."
|Contact: Kathleen Eggleson|
University of Notre Dame