Saturday, August 2, 2008

In the interest of not adding to the confusion re Ivins,0,2705314.story

My comments to a reporter were misinterpreted and I want to clarify them. The story says, "Ivins was a civilian working in the Army's main bioterrorism program. Nass said Ivins always complained about being treated poorly by some of the military personnel."

Bruce did not ever complain to me about being "treated poorly." I suggested to the reporter that Bruce might have been a relative outsider since he was a civilian in an army institution run and mostly staffed by military officers and soldiers. I had also discussed with Bruce the possibility a chronic illness might be exacerbated by his yearly booster vaccinations. But if you are an anthrax expert, and you need yearly vaccinations to continue in your profession, you don't have many options. I don't know whether he considered this a serious problem.

I probably spoke to Bruce every 1-2 years, meeting up at conferences and sharing scientific information. I liked him. One could rely on the quality of his research. I don't think we spoke for the past six years. I wish we had.

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