Saturday, October 26, 2019

Anthrax Vaccination :: essays research papers

The anthrax vaccination is the only known defense available for United States Troops against the deadly anthrax virus. Many experts have said it is not effective against inhalation anthrax. Studies have not been conclusive in their findings. The chance of living if you have received the anthrax vaccination seems better. More studies should be conducted outside the Department of Defense, with their cooperation, before the process to vaccinate troops continues. Anthrax is a disease normally associated with plant eating animals (sheep, goats, and cattle) caused by the bacterium Bacillius anthracis. It is now controlled through vaccination programs throughout the world including the United States. Human infection with anthrax usually results from contact with infected animals or products. Anthrax was discovered by Robert Koch in 1876. An effective vaccine for animals was developed in 1881 by Louis Pasteur. In humans, the disease appears in both external and internal forms. The external form is contracted through cuts and breaks in the skin. The internal form is caught by inhaling anthrax spores, which invade the lungs and intestinal tract (Funk and Wagnalls New Encyclopedia, 1996). Russian scientists have created a new form of the anthrax virus by genetic engineering. Col. Arthur Friedlander , chief of the bacteriology division at the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute states, †The evidence that they presented suggested that it could be resistant to our vaccine† (Riechman, Army Times 03-09-98). When anthrax is used as a biological weapon, people become infected by breathing the spores released in the air. Anthrax is 100,000 times deadlier than the deadliest chemical warfare agent. It is the preferred biological agent because it is easy to produce in bulk and the materials are low in cost. (B.D.Hawkins,Army Times) Dr. Jose Ramero Cruz, of the World Health Organization states,†Because anthrax spores are resistant to dryness and heat, they are relatively easy to grind and store†. U.S. officials say that as many as 12 countries including Russia, Iraq, and North Korea, have established capabilities to produce and load deadly anthrax spores into weapons (D.Funk, Army Times, 3-19-98). An anthrax loaded scud missile could kill 100,000 people in an urban area according to a 1993 study, â€Å"Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction: Assessing the Risks†, (J. Erlich, Army Times, 9-8-97). No country is known to have released the biological agent during wartime. Anthrax has the potential to cover large areas of the battlefield. It is not known what branch of service, front line, or rear area troops would be at greater risks. Defense Secretary William Cohen stated, â€Å"Anthrax is the poor man’s atomic bomb† (D.

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