Monday, September 26, 2005

3 plague-infected lab mice missing

Officials said the animals could have been stolen from the center, one of the top-level biocontainment labs in New Jersey -- or simply misplaced. The discovery occurred more than two weeks ago and was confirmed Wednesday after questions were raised by The Star-Ledger newspaper.

State Health Commissioner Fred Jacobs said mice infected with plague bacteria die "very fast," so "the risk to the public ... is probably slim to none."


So far no one has been reported dead from bubonic plague, so it looks like we lucked out. Emphasis on "luck."

5 comments:

Boogey_Man said...

Born and raised in California Ive been told many times that some squirrels and various other fur bearing varmits out here sometimes carry the dreaded black death. Every few years some hiker or camper will be out and decide to feed the little buggers and they end up dying from it.

How embarassing. You, a modern go-go yuppy in California and you end of dying of some dark age pathogen.

Everytime one of these poor folks gets the black death the end of the story on the evening news talks about how the REAL trouble will start if one of the plague carriers ever make it back to, say, New York in a fruit crate. A plague rat in population dense, rat heavy NYC would be a never ending nightmare.

Mac said...

A plague rat in population dense, rat heavy NYC would be a never ending nightmare.

But probably not as bad as FEMA's response...

W.M. Bear said...

Plague Rat -- Sounds like a great title for a dystopian s.f. novel. (Didn't somebody do something like this at some point?)

Mac said...

Connie Willis wrote an acclaimed time travel novel about the Black Death that I want to read ("Doomsday Book").

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