The year 2001 will be remembered sadly for a single date: Sept. 11. The horrific loss of lives to terrorism on that day overshadows all earlier events of the year. The fear instilled on Sept. 11 was soon exacerbated by bioterrorism, as anthrax spores sent through the mail caused additional deaths and provided a threat that seemed it might reach into any home or workplace. People immediately looked to science for tools to protect them against terrorism.
Researchers who study microbes have been called upon to help investigators identify anthrax spores, to come up with effective means to decontaminate office buildings, to design therapies for people who may have been exposed to anthrax and those showing symptoms of infection (SN: 10/20/01, p. 246), and to develop plans to guard the public against future attempts at mass murder. Attention turned to recent results exploring the basic biology of anthrax (SN: 10/27/01, p.