SARS: French scientists lose 2,300 samples of potentially deadly virus
Institut Pasteur realised tubes were missing during a routine inventory check. Pictured posed.
The renowned Institut Pasteur in France has admitted that it has misplaced 2,349 vials containing samples of the potentially deadly SARS virus and, despite enlisting help from France’s drug and health safety agency, have been unable to find them.
The investigation by the ANSM at the unnamed laboratory failed to locate the samples, which have been missing since January. It has now filed a case to the prosecutor of Paris to investigate the disappearance.
The Institut Pasteur has been quick to reassure the public that the vials do not pose any risk, according to The Local.
“The tubes concerned have no infectious potential,” a statement said. “Independent experts referred by health authorities have qualified the risk as 'nil' in regards to available evidence and literature on the survival of the SAS virus.”
They also dismissed the threat of samples being misused because none of the tubes contained the complete virus, only fragments.
“We knew from the beginning that the samples were not infectious, as the independent experts confirmed,” said Christian Bréchot, President of L’Institut Pasteur said.
“ [But] losing the samples is an unacceptable mistake. We took a decision to inform the public. We want to be perfectly transparent. It is the first time that the institute has lost samples in this manner and it is entirely inadmissible.”
SARS is a serious respiratory illness and was responsible for the death of almost 800 people in over two dozen countries during the 2003 outbreak in Asia.
Note by SiNeh~
French scientists (Not pictured here) woke up a really old virus this week. Bad idea? Photo: Expert Infantry/Flickr
French scientists 'wake' 30,000-year-old virus
Published: 04 Mar 2014 12:23 GMT+01:00
French scientists said on Monday they had re-activated an ancient virus they found preserved in the Siberian ice. It may not sound like a good idea, but the scientists insist it is a warning about what unknown killer strains could be released by global warming.
Region locals stopped an armored column of airborne troops of Ukraine near the Raygorodka village of Lugansk. Tanks, armored personnel carriers and trucks with howitzers were moving from Dnepropetrovsk to Lugansk, Itar-Tass reported. Village Raygorodka of Novoaydarskogo region is located 30 kilometers from Lugansk.
Local residents refused to allow the military to move and have blocked the road to the district center. They put their own cars on the sides of the road. Residents of Raygorodki began talking with the commander of the column Andrei Kovalchuk, who refused to say where or why the column was moving. The officer said only that their intention was to defend the country against "external aggressor" and assured it would not use weapons against civilians.
It was declared to the column that they are not going to be allowed to Lugansk. Villagers asked them to surrender their weapons or to return to the place of deployment. Activists explained their actions by saying that they "do not want war," stated the Ukrainian news resource NEWSRU.ua. There were at least six armored personnel carriers and trucks with six howitzers on the road between the settlements Chastye and Raygorodka on Tuesday evening.
At the time of publishing this article there was no information about the situation in Raygorodka on the website of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine.
A similar incident took place the night before in Lugansk. In the city Rovenky residents stopped three Kamaz of Ukrainian army that were carrying weapons. Trucks were carrying machines and sniper rifles. Representatives of the Self-Defense Forces announced the captured weapons as their trophy.
On the night of Tuesday, April 15 several Ukrainian Army units were also seen on the outskirts of cities Slavyansk and Kramatorsk of Donetsk region. The new government authorities have decided to use the troops after federalization supporters have captured buildings of local administration and police stations in several cities.
The United States has once again said it will not issue a visa to Iran’s pick for the position of ambassador to the United Nations, Hamid Aboutalebi.
"Given his role in the events of 1979, which clearly matter profoundly to the American people, it would be unacceptable to grant this visa," State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said on Tuesday.
Washington has decided to deny visa to Aboutalebi over his alleged involvement in the takeover of the US Embassy in Tehran during post-revolution incidents in 1979.
On April 10, the US House of Representatives unanimously approved a legislation that prevents Aboutalebi from entering the US.
Iran has rejected the US decision as unacceptable and says it will follow up on the issue through diplomatic channels at the UN.
Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Marziyeh Afkham said that the US has violated international law as well as an agreement between the UN and Washington.
"The official mechanisms for lodging the complaint at the United Nations have been activated, and are under way," she said on Monday.
On November 4, 1979, a group of Iranian university students took over the US Embassy in Tehran, which they believed had turned into a "den of espionage". Documents found at the compound later corroborated the claims by the students.
The UN regulations stipulate that each country is allowed to select its own representatives at the international organization and the US, as the host country, must grant visas to the appointed diplomats.