SAN ANTONIO (AP) - Researchers, veterinarians and state and
local officials are overwhelmingly in favor of putting a new
national biodefense lab in San Antonio.
But a few residents expressed concerns today about an accidental
release of animal disease into the community.
The Department of Homeland Security collected public comments on
the National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility at a federal hearing.
Texas Research Park, just outside San Antonio, is among six
possible sites for the facility.
The new facility would replace the existing 24-acre research
complex on Plum Island, northeast of New York City in the Long
Researchers at the new facility could study foot-and-mouth
disease, classical and African swine fever, Japanese encephalitis,
Rift Valley fever and contagious bovine pleuropneumonia.
The other locations the U.S. is considering are Athens, Ga.;
Manhattan, Kan.; Butner, N.C.; and Flora, Miss. Another alternative
would be construction of a new research lab on Plum Island, home to
the aging Animal Disease Center.