Lawmakers demand an investigation into an old conspiracy theory that government arms have spread and caused the spread of a debilitating disease that infects approximately 300,000 Americans each year.
The House of Representatives last week voted Chris Smith, a Republican from New Jersey, to the mass defense defense law to authorize the investigation into "the possible involvement of DOD laboratories for organic production of ticks and other insects in the Lyme disease" .
directs the Chief Inspector of the Ministry of Defense to investigate whether the Department has experimented with ticks and other insects for the use of possible biological weapons between 1
If evidence of an experiment is found, the Inspector General is directed to determine whether the ticks or insects used in the experiment were released – either deliberately or accidentally – in
Smith said he was inspired to write the amendment through "a number of books and articles that suggest that significant studies (19659003) He also mentions the new book Bitten: The Secret History of Lym's Disease and Biological Weapons which suggests that the rise of Lyme disease over the past few decades is a military experiment wrongly The book written by Stanford writer Kris Newby includes interviews with Willy Burgdorfer, the man who is believed to find the bacteria that cause the disease Lime.
"Americans have a right to know if this is true," Smith said at
But the experts say there is no need to investigate because there is no evidence or science to support it. "There are definitely better things to do than just follow the theory of the plot," said Maria Duke-Wasser, associate professor of ecology, evolution and ecology biology at Columbia University. "It's easy to make a difference "
Lyme disease is caused by the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi.Microbes infect black ticks that can transmit the infection to humans by bite This is the most common vector disease in the United States and can cause a wide range of symptoms including fever, chills, fatigue, rash, and muscle pain If not treated, the disease can cause more severe joint pain, facial paralysis, irregular heartbeat and inflammation of the brain and spinal cord, according to the CDC
Cases of the disease have steadily grown over the past 25 years. In 2017, the CDC received reports of more than 42,000 confirmed or probable cases of the disease, although the agency estimates that about 300,000 people in the United States have bacteria each year.
Gary Wormser, chief of infectious diseases at New York Medical College and founder and director of the Diagnostic Center for Lymph Disease, said the theory was not logical Wormser, who studied Lym from late 1980s, says the theory, which includes the myth that bacteria are created in a US government lab, is one of several myths. for Lym's disease, which have been circulating for years.
"This is only part of the mythology of Lyme disease," Wormser said. "No one pays attention to the actual facts."
Duke-Vasser said studies have shown that bacteria have existed for tens of thousands of years, adding that if it is true that the government has caused a widespread disease by releasing infected ticks in New York, then the bacteria will not be found in USA – which is, by the way. "It could not have spread since the 1950s or 1960s in the whole country, it's impossible because the ticks are moving very slowly," she said. "We know that Borelia, which is all over the United States, has a genetically old background."
Experts also said that ticks would generally be poor candidates for biological weapons. indeed, it is aerosolized, "said Greg Ebel, professor and director of the laboratory for contagious diseases and arthropods at the State University of Colorado. "I've never seen any evidence to make me think that's a good choice."
Rather, scientists say that increasing the spread of bacteria in disease cases is probably due to a combination of factors
"Forests have grown and now there are huge populations of deer – large populations of ticks, "Ebel said. the amendment was added but still needs to be aligned with the Senate version before an investigation is launched. But even if the investigation was to take place and no evidence of the theory was found, Duke-Wasser doubted that this would satisfy the best. 19659003] "I do not think they will believe." Conspiracy is based on the assumption that the government will deny these things, "she said. "It just seems very strange to me that [lawmakers] will do that."