What can be used as a weapon in bioterrorism?

Among the agents deemed likely candidates for biological weapons use are the toxins ricin, staphylococcal enterotoxin B (SEB), botulinum toxin, and T-2 mycotoxin and the infectious agents responsible for anthrax, brucellosis, cholera, pneumonic plague, tularemia, Q fever, smallpox, glanders, Venezuelan equine …

How can pathogens be used as weapons?

Biological weapons include infectious agents (pathogens) and toxins. The most devastating bioterrorism scenario would be the airborne dispersal of pathogens over a concentrated population area.

What is the best biological weapon?

Anthrax is probably No. 1 on the list of most likely biological agents because it’s naturally found in soil, is easily produced and lasts for a long, long time once disbursed. It’s odorless, colorless and tasteless, meaning it’s bad news as a sneaky weapon of mass destruction.

Is it illegal to have biological weapons?

Offensive biological warfare is prohibited under customary international humanitarian law and several international treaties. In particular, the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention (BWC) bans the development, production, acquisition, transfer, stockpiling and use of biological weapons.

Could influenza virus be used a biological weapon?

As a potential biological weapon, influenza has several advantages over smallpox, including ready accessibility, write Mohammad Madjid, MD, and three colleagues. The authors are affiliated with the University of Texas–Houston Health Center and two heart institutes in Houston.

Which bacteria has been used as a biological weapon?

4 Types of Pathogenic Bacteria Used in Bioterrorism

  • Bacillus anthracis (Anthrax)
  • Clostridium botulinum (botulism)
  • Francisella tularensis subsp. Tularensis (valley fever)
  • Yersinia pestis (the plague)

Which is the best category for bioterrorism agents?

Category A Definition The U.S. public health system and primary healthcare providers must be prepared to address various biological agents, including pathogens that are rarely seen in the United States. High-priority agents ( ( )

Are there any biological weapons in the world?

There has been only one notable effort to develop and employ biological capabilities for terrorist purposes, which was by the Japanese cult Aum Shinrikyo. Aum devoted vast sums of money, time, and considerable expertise to the task of making biological weapons, but it was not successful.

Can a catastrophic bioterrorism attack have yet happened?

Because a catastrophic bioterrorism attack has not yet happened, trying to understand the phenomenon entails some speculation based on reasonable extrapolations both from the scientific understanding of pathogens and from the social science understanding of terrorist behavior.

What are the advantages of using biological weapons?

Arguably the greatest advantage of biological weapons is their ability to cause mass panic. Bombing a large and heavily populated building is terrifying, as is releasing chemical weapons in a confined space such as a subway, but these attacks are geographically limited.