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Bacillus anthracis
  1. R C Spencer
  1. Correspondence to:
 Dr R C Spencer, Public Health Laboratory, Bristol Royal Infirmary, Marlborough Street, Bristol BS2 8 HW, UK;


The events of 11 September 2001 and the subsequent anthrax outbreaks have shown that the West needs to be prepared for an increasing number of terrorist attacks, which may include the use of biological warfare. Bacillus anthracis has long been considered a potential biological warfare agent, and this review will discuss the history of its use as such. It will also cover the biology of this organism and the clinical features of the three disease forms that it can produce: cutaneous, gastrointestinal, and inhalation anthrax. In addition, treatment and vaccination strategies will be reviewed.

  • Bacillus anthracis
  • biological warfare

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