Advances in detecting and responding to threats from bioterrorism and emerging infectious disease

Nat Med. 2004 Dec;10(12 Suppl):S130-6. doi: 10.1038/nm1152.


Much progress has been made in recent years to strengthen local, state, national and international capacities to detect and respond to bioterrorism events and naturally occurring outbreaks of disease. New tools and systems are available to estimate the potential impact of a biological event and predict resource needs for effective response, enable earlier detection of an attack or outbreak, enhance diagnostic capacity and facilitate rapid intervention to mitigate the impact of an event on a community. These advances have required new approaches to preparedness, planning and surveillance, as well as new partnerships and collaborations across a range of disciplines. We examine some of these developments, discuss potential uses and limitations of these approaches, and identify priorities for the future.

MeSH terms

  • Biological Warfare
  • Bioterrorism*
  • Communicable Disease Control
  • Communicable Diseases, Emerging / diagnosis*
  • Communicable Diseases, Emerging / epidemiology*
  • Disaster Planning
  • Disease Outbreaks
  • Humans
  • Public Health