The U.S. government has been forced to shut down research at a military lab in Maryland over safety concerns. The U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases in Fort Detrick, Maryland, has put research on hold, likely for months, according to a spokeswoman Caree Vander Linden. The suspended research included work with toxins and “special agents” such as ebola, anthrax, and smallpox. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a cease and desist order last month because the institute did not have “sufficient systems in place to decontaminate wastewater” from its high-security labs, according to a statement from the institute. Vander Linden told The New York Times there have not been any threats to public health, no injuries to employees, and no leaks outside the lab. She added that the facility has been having problems since May 2018, when a storm damaged a steam sterilization plant the institute had been using to treat wastewater from its labs.
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