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Revista Brasileira de Epidemiologia

Print version ISSN 1415-790X

Abstract

ALMEIDA, Maria Eneida de. Warfare and biological development: the case of biotechnology and genomics during the second half of the 20th Century. Rev. bras. epidemiol. [online]. 2006, vol.9, n.3, pp. 264-282. ISSN 1415-790X.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1415-790X2006000300002.

Since the 1980's, biotechnology has played an increasingly predominant role in the strategic planning of the super-powers, as the central element of a new type of mass destruction weapon as well as a model for defense planning and protection of their national populations. This study aims to demonstrate the path taken by Biology towards the core of American defense planning and also to investigate the close relationship between biotechnological development, in particular that of Genome Science and war. The specific hypothesis of this study is that biotechnology took a firm stand in military affairs when a condensation point was reached encompassing political facts and a flow of biotechnological possibilities, which have increased political-military interest in biotechnological development. A historiographical analysis was the method used for investigating this connection, following the two converging roads, which, in our view, make up the central nerve of biotechnological development: biological war and the Human Genome Project.

Keywords : Biological Warfare; Human Genome Project; History; Biotechnological Development; Big Science.

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