Scientists Resume High-Stakes Work With Bird Flu Virus

WASHINGTON (January 23, 2013)--International scientists are returning to some high-stakes research involving the deadly bird flu, after a yearlong hiatus.

An outcry erupted after scientists in the Netherlands and the U.S. reported that they had created easier-to-spread versions of the virus as they studied how bird flu might mutate to become a bigger threat to people.

Critics worried about safety precautions, and whether the work might aid terrorists, so in January 2012, those scientists and three- dozen more, including some of the world's leading flu specialists, temporarily halted the work.

On Wednesday, the scientists said it's time to get back to work because health authorities have come up with new rules to oversee the research.

A number of countries already have issued them, and the U.S. is finalizing its own guidelines.

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