Head of troubled CDC anthrax lab has resigned

July 23, 2014 by The Associated Press

(AP)—Health officials say that the head of the government lab which potentially exposed workers to live anthrax has resigned.

Michael Farrell was head of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention lab since 2009. A CDC spokesman says he resigned Tuesday.

Farrell was reassigned following an incident last month at an Atlanta lab that handles bioterrorism agents. The lab was supposed to completely kill anthrax samples before sending them to two other CDC labs that had fewer safeguards. But the higher-security lab did not completely sterilize the bacteria.

Dozens of CDC workers were potentially exposed to . No one got sick. But an internal investigation found serious safety lapses, including use of an unapproved sterilization technique.

The CDC spokesman declined to give any other details.

Explore further: US probes lab workers' possible anthrax exposure (Update)

Related Stories

US probes lab workers' possible anthrax exposure (Update)

June 19, 2014

Some workers at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention may have been accidentally exposed to dangerous anthrax bacteria this month because of a safety problem at some of its labs in Atlanta, the federal agency ...

Dozens of US workers taking anti-anthrax drugs

June 20, 2014

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says at least 52 workers are taking antibiotics as a precaution because of a lab safety problem that may have accidentally exposed them to anthrax.

CDC issues tough report on anthrax scare

July 12, 2014

(HealthDay)—U.S. health officials have concluded that it's highly unlikely any lab workers were exposed to live anthrax during a safety mishap last month.

Second probe details more CDC anthrax lab problems

July 14, 2014

A second investigation found more safety problems at federal health laboratories in Atlanta, including the use of expired disinfectants and the transfer of dangerous germs in Ziploc bags.

Safety problems at US germ labs acknowledged

July 16, 2014

(AP)—The director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention acknowledged Wednesday that systemic safety problems have for years plagued federal public health laboratories that handle dangerous germs such as ...

Recommended for you

Monkeys in Asia harbor virus from humans, other species

November 19, 2015

When it comes to spreading viruses, bats are thought to be among the worst. Now a new study of nearly 900 nonhuman primates in Bangladesh and Cambodia shows that macaques harbor more diverse astroviruses, which can cause ...

One-step test for hepatitis C virus infection developed

November 14, 2015

UC Irvine Health researchers have developed a cost-effective one-step test that screens, detects and confirms hepatitis C virus (HCV) infections. Dr. Ke-Qin Hu, director of hepatology services, will present findings at the ...

Computer model reveals deadly route of Ebola outbreak

November 10, 2015

Using a novel statistical model, a research team led by Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health mapped the spread of the 2014-2015 Ebola outbreak in Sierra Leone, providing the most detailed picture to date ...


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.