Past Event

Trends in Science and Technology Relevant to the Biological Weapons Convention: An International Workshop

October 31, 2010 - November 3, 2010

Institute of Biophysics
Chinese Academy of Sciences Beijing

Life sciences research is an increasingly global enterprise in which rapid advances promise important contributions to health, food, and energy challenges. However, concerns have also been raised that some of the tools, techniques, and materials developed to tackle these needs could be potentially misapplied. The workshop provided an opportunity for the international scientific community to discuss the implications of recent developments in science and technology that might be relevant to the development of biological weapons or to detection, diagnostics, or therapeutics that could affect potential prevention and response to biological attacks.

78 Scientists and policy makers from 28 countries and several international organizations participated in the discussions. The report of the workshop will be produced by an international steering committee under the auspices of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences as an independent input from the scientific community to the 7th Review Conference of the Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention.

Workshop Summaries Resulting from this Event

Trends in Science and Technology Relevant to the Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention: Summary of an International Workshop: October 31 to November 3, 2010, Beijing, China (2011)

The potential of recent advances in science and technology to affect the Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention was discussed at a recent workshop held at the Institute of Biophysics of the Chinese Academy of Sciences. The meeting was convened by IAP -- the Global Network of Science Academies, the International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, the International Union of Microbiological Societies, the Chinese Academy of Sciences, an... More >>


Sunday, 31 October

Reception and Welcome Remarks from Sponsoring Organizations

Monday, 1 November

Welcome Address: Tao Xu, Director-General, Institute of Biophysics, Chinese Academy of Sciences

Plenary Session 1: Introduction to the Themes, Goals, and Context of the Workshop
1. Aims and Objectives of the Meeting – Roderick Flower, Queen Mary University of London, UK
2. The Biological Weapons Convention: A Brief Overview – Piers Millet, BWC Implementation Support Unit, United Nations, Switzerland
3. Framework for Evaluating New Science and Technology – Ralf Trapp, CBW Consultant, France
4. Perspective from the Chinese Academy of Sciences – Li Huang, Institute of Microbiology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, China
5. Discussion

Plenary Session 2: Developments in Design, Fabrication, and Production (A)
1. Bioinformatics and Computational Tools – Etienne de Villiers, International Livestock Research Institute, Kenya
2. Systems Biology: Relevance to the Biological and Toxins Weapons Convention – Andrew Pitt, University of Glasgow, UK
3. Emerging Trends in Synthetic Biology – Pawan Dhar, University of Kerala, India
4. Discussion

Plenary Session 3: Developments in Design, Fabrication, and Production (B)
1. Bioreactors and Transgenic Animals – Ryszard Słomski, Poznań University of Life Sciences, Poland
2. Transgenic Plants and Recombinant Pharmaceuticals – Julian Ma, St. Georges University of London, UK
3. Neuroscience developments – James Eberwine, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, USA
4. Discussion

Plenary Session 4: Dispersal and Delivery
1. Aerosols and Aerobiology – Chad Roy, Tulane National Primate Research Center, USA
2. Nanostructured Delivery Systems for Drugs, Proteins and Cells – Jackie Ying, Institute of Bioengineering and Nanotechnology, Singapore
3. Commentary: Implications Stemming From Advances in Dual-Use Targeted Delivery Systems – Kathryn Nixdorff, Darmstadt University of Science and Technology, Germany
4. Discussion

Breakout Discussion Sessions

Special Event: “Strengthening the culture of responsibility with respect to dual use research and biosecurity” (videoteleconference).  Organized by NIH/NSABB and the Chinese Academy of Sciences, in cooperation with the IAP, IUMS, IUBMB, and NAS

Tuesday, 2 November

Plenary Session 5: Summary from Day 1

Plenary Session 6: Detection, Identification, and Monitoring
1. Postgenomic Technologies – Andrew Pitt, University of Glasgow, UK
2. Exploring an International Microbial Forensics Capability to Support Attribution and Advance Global Biosecurity – Randall Murch, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, USA
3. Biosensors Overview – Gary Resnick, Los Alamos National Laboratory, USA
4. Biosensor Development – Ilya Kurochkin, M.V. Lomonosov Moscow State University, Russia
5. Remarks: Brief Summary of the Science used by the FBI in the Anthrax Attacks Case of 2001 - Nancy Connell, University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, USA
6. Discussion

Plenary Session 7: Defense and Countermeasures
1. Vaccines and Medical Countermeasures – Nancy Connell, University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, USA
2. Monitoring and Molecular Diagnosis of Emerging Infectious Diseases – Raymond Lin, National Public Health Laboratory, Singapore
3. Agricultural Biosecurity: Threats to Crop Production – Michael Jeger, Imperial College London, UK
4. Discussion

Breakout Discussion Sessions

Plenary Session 8: Communication
1. How the Internet has Changed Scientific Interchanges – James Meadway, The Royal Society, UK
2. Influence of Technology on Scientific Collaboration: Indonesia Experience – Herawati Sudoyo, Eijkman Institute for Molecular Biology, Indonesia
3. Biological Risks – Future Trends: Conveying the Concept of Risk – Terence Taylor, International Council for the Life Sciences, USA
4. Discussion

Wednesday, November 3

Plenary session 9: Summary from Day 2

Plenary session 10: Workshop Conclusions

Meeting Adjournment


Roderick J. Flower (Chair) - Queen Mary University of London
Hernan Chaimovich - Butantan Foundation
Nancy D. Connell - University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey
Andrzej Górski - Polish Academy of Sciences
Li Huang - Institute of Microbiology, Chinese Academy of Sciences
Maxwell Otim-Onapa - Uganda National Council for Science and Technology
Mohamed Iqbal Parker - University of Cape Town
Andrew Pitt - University of Glasgow
Ralf Trapp - CBW Arms Control and Disarmament Consultant
Lloyd Whitman - U.S. National Institute for Standards and Technology


Chinese Academy of Sciences
Lei Zhang
Wei Yang
Xiao Ke Xia

U.S. National Academies
Jo L. Husbands
Katherine Bowman
Kathryn Hughes
Benjamin Rusek
Sayyeda Ayesha Ahmed

List of participants

About this Event

Organizing Body:

Committee on Trends in Science and Technology Relevant to the Biological Weapons Convention: An International Workshop

Primary Board:

Board on Life Sciences

Collaborating Unit(s):

Board on Chemical Sciences and Technology
Policy and Global Affairs Division


Katherine Bowman, BLS Senior Program Officer,