Researchers at IIT Bombay discover the role of environmental resources, genes and mating in species in the development of new species in the same area, challenging the traditional view that new species can develop only in distinct geographies.

Biological Warfare

Read time: 2 mins 23 September, 2017 - 08:00

All of us are aware of the 9/11 terror attacks that took a heavy toll of life in the United States. Just a week after that attack, when things were becoming somewhat stable, there was news that 5 people in a famous news agency in the US died. The reason was that they were sent some letters. Innocuous as they may seem, letters can be deadly when they contain deadly diseases. One disease which can be spread through letters and such dried up material is anthrax. Anthrax is a disease caused by bacteria named Bacillus anthracis. It usually spreads through infected meat, but dried up anthrax spores which look similar to pollen grains, have equal potential to cause the disease. Thus, a letter served like a bomb - a biological bomb! There are millions of microbes around us - some beneficial, some disease causing. Scientists are trying hard to get rid of disease causing microbes by producing more and more efficient vaccines. But who knew that some evil scientist is using microbes to prepare a biological bomb to start biological warfare! It is very easy to culture and store microbes under lab conditions; they grow at a very fast rate. We just have to fill a container full of disease causing microbes; throw it wherever you want and then boom! But a boom of a very different kind. Within minutes, people will get infected. Within hours, the death toll will start mounting. As technologies are developing, we should really start think if we are using the technology for making our life better or if we are laying more sophisticated death traps for ourselves?