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2008 ASM Biodefense and Emerging Disease Research Meeting

The American Society for Microbiology (ASM) will host its 2008 Biodefense and Emerging Diseases Research Meeting February 24-27, 2008 at the Baltimore Marriott Waterfront Hotel in Baltimore, MD.

There is a continuing need for research that helps better protect the public against not only the traditional agents of bioterrorism, like anthrax, but also against emerging infectious diseases that hold the potential for serious human and economic harm, such as H5N1 influenza. In 2006 the federal government budgeted approximately $4 billion for biodefense research and preparedness and last year created the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, designed to help speed the development of biodefense countermeasures using an estimated funding of $1 billion dollars in fiscal year 2008.

The purpose of this meeting is to bring together individuals who are carrying out research to defend against the threat of bioterrorism with decision makers shaping the future biodefense research agenda, recognizing that emerging infectious diseases serve as a paradigm for handling the public threat of bioterrorism.

This meeting is intended for scientists, public health researchers and policy makers who need to be informed about the latest scientific developments. The meeting will include a series of keynote addresses by leaders in the field of biodefense and poster sessions presenting up-to-the-minute cutting-edge research on biothreat agents, vaccines, detection and diagnostic procedures, animal and plant pathogens, global surveillance, and other vital topics.

The first day of the conference will be devoted concurrent sessions focusing on international suveillance and response for emerging diseases, bioethics and issues of conscience, and monitoring and maintenanace of biosecurity. The focus sessions will be followed by a keynote address by Albert Osterhaus of Erasmus University Medical Center, Rotterdam, the Netherlands, entitled, AIDS, SARS, Bird Flu Are We Prepared for the Next Pandemic?

Additional plenary topics include:

  • Food safety
  • Vaccine development
  • The interface of human and animal diseases

The press center will be located in the Baltimore Marriott Waterfront Hotel. Program and abstract books, news releases and information about daily activities will be available.


Contact: Jim Sliwa
American Society for Microbiology

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