A gas-cylinder explosion has sparked a fire at a Russian laboratory housing one of the world’s most comprehensive collections of dangerous viruses.
Russia's consumer-safety watchdog Rospotrebnadzor said on September 16 that one worker was sent to hospital for third-degree burns suffered in the incident at the State Research Center of Virology and Biotechnology (Vector) near the Russian city of Novosibirsk.
In the 1970-1980s, the research center developed biological and bacteriological weapons, as well as means of protection against them.
Under Rospotrebnadzor supervision, the center stores dangerous strains of smallpox, anthrax, Ebola, and other viruses.
Vector is one of two institutions on the planet where the smallpox virus survives.