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Pitch

We should pro-actively be investigating ice cores from Greenland and Antarctica for diseases which we are not immune from.


Description

Summary

Spores have been revived in the laboratory that are 10s of thousands of years old. While we may have previously developed immunity from such disease such immunity can fade with time. These spores, etc. may still be viable although frozen in fast melting areas such as Greenland or Antarctica. We should be proactively examining ice cores for such threats. Birds would be the most likely disease vector.


Is this proposal for a practice or a project?

Project


What actions do you propose?

Ice cores from scientific research should be exmined for viable disease orgnisms and vaccines produced.


Who will take these actions?

The World Health Organization should head a research consortium of local health organizations like the US CDC.


Where will these actions be taken?

Many countries have done research with ice cores and have stored them. All stored ice cores should be inventoried and subject to disease research.


In addition, specify the country or countries where these actions will be taken.

No country selected


Country 2

No country selected


Country 3

No country selected


Country 4

No country selected


Country 5

No country selected


Impact/Benefits


What impact will these actions have on greenhouse gas emissions and/or adapting to climate change?

While some have suggested rising global temperatures may affect disease rates of currently know diseases, little has been noted about the possible re-emergence of ancient diseases frozen in ice.


What are other key benefits?

Vaccines developed to fight ancient disease may also prove useful for related current diseases.


Costs/Challenges


What are the proposal’s projected costs?

The costs would depend entirely upon the number of viable disease organisms found. Costs of vaccine development are variable based on the nature of disease resistance.


Timeline

Ice cores currently in storage could be assessed immediately. Vaccine development is variable. Addition core samples might be indicated if certain areas produce more viable organisms than other areas.


About the author(s)

The author is a retired computer programmer and systems analyst.


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References