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Sat Oct 29, 2016, 07:23 AM

Have humans already created the next plague?

Role in biowarfare testing

Until the 1950s, S. marcescens was erroneously believed to be a nonpathogenic "saprophyte", and its reddish coloration was used in school experiments to track infections. During the Cold War, it was used as a simulant in biological warfare testing by the U.S. military which studied it in field tests as a substitute for the tularemia bacterium, which was being weaponized at the time.

On 26 and 27 September 1950, the U.S. Navy conducted a secret experiment named "Operation Sea-Spray" in which some S. marcescens was released by bursting balloons of it over urban areas of the San Francisco Bay Area in California.
Although the Navy later claimed the bacteria were harmless, beginning on September 29, 11 patients at a local hospital developed very rare, serious urinary tract infections, and one of these individuals, Edward J. Nevin, died. Cases of pneumonia in San Francisco also increased after S. marcescens was released.
(That the simulant bacteria caused these infections and death has never been conclusively established. Nevin's son and grandson lost a lawsuit they brought against the government between 1981 and 1983.) The bacterium was also combined with phenol and an anthrax simulant and sprayed across south Dorset by US and UK military scientists as part of the DICE trials which ran from 1971 to 1975.

Since 1950, S. marcescens has steadily increased as a cause of human infection, with many strains resistant to multiple antibiotics. The first indications of problems with the influenza vaccine produced by Chiron Corporation in 2004 involved S. marcescens contamination.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serratia_marcescens#Role_in_biowarfare_testing

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Reply Have humans already created the next plague? (Original post)
Attila Gorilla Oct 2016 OP
Squeek Nov 2016 #1

Response to Attila Gorilla (Original post)

Wed Nov 2, 2016, 12:01 PM

1. For a so-called

"intelligent" species, we humans sure are real stupid sometimes, and eventually our stupidity is gonna rise up and bite us all in the ass.

Or wipe us out completely.

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