Biotechnology: Genetically Engineered Pathogens (The Counterproliferation Papers, Future Warfare Series No. 53)
USAF COUNTERPROLIFERATION CENTER MAXWELL AFB AL
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The bright side of advancements in biotechnology is offering great promise in improving human health, combating diseases, and promoting a better quality of life. But, for every bright side there is an opposing dark side. Biotechnology, when used maliciously or negligently, can destroy human life. Advanced biotechnology, in particular genetically engineered pathogens such as viruses, and bacteria, could become a potential choice for use as biological warfare agents. Will advancements in biotechnology enable genetically engineered pathogens to become a weapon of choice for nations, groups, andor individuals in 2035 In presenting the argument, a look into conventional biological warfare agents is necessary before focusing on advanced systems in determining the plausible role and effects of genetically engineered pathogens in the future. Characteristics of each pathogen will be discussed to determine the threats and challenges they may present by the year 2035. Rogue states, radical groups, and individuals, given the opportunity to employ biological weapons, will most likely use it to inflict harm and terror on the United States and its allies. Therefore, knowing what is to come will allow the United States to prepare for and deter the use of these nefarious weapons.
- Genetic Engineering and Molecular Biology
- Chemical, Biological and Radiological Warfare