International Security

Intelligent and connected bio-labs – promise and peril in the Fourth Industrial Revolution

The potential of new biotechnologies to become weaponized is growing

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International Security

Global BSL4 Capability. Red dots indicate a laboratory with BSL-4 (or the local equivalent) capability. Increasingly, the threat is not a biological agent leaving one of these laboratories, but instead an agent being engineered using publicly available sequences, synthetic biology tools, and automated and intelligent processes. This is greatly increasingly who has access to dangerous toxins and agents for malicious use.
Exploiting the gaps. Given advances in DNA synthesis techniques and the advent of robotic cloud laboratories, one may find ways to circumvent current governance barriers. Example companies to complete each step are listed in parenthesis.
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Related topics:
International SecurityFourth Industrial RevolutionBiotechnology
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