THE FBI’S ANTHRAX LETTERS INVESTIGATION:
POINTS TO CONSIDER
MERYL NASS, MD
I was acquainted with Bruce Ivins from 1991 until his death. Yes, he had significant emotional problems and was socially awkward. However, his scientific work was of high quality and was relied on by those studying anthrax vaccines here and abroad.
Bruce sought neither money nor fame. He could have used his expertise to consult at a much higher salary, especially after the anthrax letters were sent, but chose not to. At work, he was invariably generous and helpful to others, myself included.
There was absolutely no risk of Bruce losing access to anthrax vaccine and thereby becoming unable to do his research, as FBI claims in its attempt to create a credible motive for the crime. USAMRIID, the Army research center where Bruce worked, holds dozens of unlicensed vaccine candidates, including those for anthrax, which researchers routinely use to vaccinate themselves. Researchers at USAMRIID always have vaccines available for their own use, licensed or not.