Good morning everyone. First let me thank Nathan and Karley Strong for inviting me to speak with you this morning. I am a new addition to the biopolicy staff within the bearue of International Safety and Nonproliferation in the Department of State. Kudos to the FBI for doing this.

I am going to talk with you briefly about the balance that nations try to strike between biology and security. To tell you about myself, sort of, unusual, I was in the Department of State, I am a lab trained scientist. To show my age I guess, I listed the various methods that I have tried with varying degrees of success in 10 years of lab work: PCR, 32p phosphoprotein assay, viral cectors, RT-PCR, phage display library construction, electrophoresis, ecoli transformation, mammalian .. long list.

Since leaving the bench- which I miss- I now work on the policy staff. The office views the acquisition of biological weapons by state and non-state actors. We are implementing for the US the Biological Weapons Convention (BWC). I would like to ask, how many of you are familiar with the BWC. About three hands. A minority, okay thanks for that. I am going to talk briefly about the BWC, because Pierce is here, and he is from Geneva, and he works on the implementation and support unit. Pursuant to our work on BWC, the office also develops measures to prevent misuses of advances in the life sciences.

To let you know, if you are not familiar with it, there was a recent review conference for BWC. The countries that participate are called state parties. They come to talk at the revcon or review conference. This was in December 2011. We had Secretary Clinton appear, and she's an international celebrity. We were showing that this is important to the US. There was Tom Hunchkin, who has the ... what corp?

Most nations in the world that are parties to the BWC are trying to balance biology and security, and the perceived risks of biology. There are also the nonproliferation regime called the Australian Regime, headed by Australia- these are countries that are agreeing to harmonize their export control regulations. Countries frequently use export controls to control SMT, relevant to this community is that some biological organisms or microbes are regulated such that, depending on the organism, I can't just send them to my colleague in France without obtaining an export license. And probably my colleague needs an import license in France. It's not prohibited, but it is regulated.

Some nations at their national level have particular health regulations that govern who can work with what microbes where. Here in the US we have the select agent regulations, like for animal and human pathogens which are considered high risk for public and animal risk. They are highly regulated, including their shipment. And also, trickling down to a local level, those municipaltieis have public helath regaulations, which regulates what you can and can't dump down your sink.

These are examples of different levels of how nations try to strike this balance. Concerning the level of message that I might bring about nations, I think nations, and practicioners have similar stakes and interests. Nations seek economic growth, SMT.. is a driver of growth. Nations have an obligation to protect their citizens from accidents and bad actors. I would say that practicioners of biology are seeking intellectual growth, and are seeking to benefit the public. Fundamentally, I... to seek such a balance as well, between a desire for innovation and ... to use a quick example, of technology that I think successfully balanced, both biology and security, is the regulation of recombinant DNA in the US.

So some of you may or may not know that in the mid 70s, there was a gruop of scientists that at a conference it became apparent that genetic engineering was going to come to fruition in a practical way. Many of the scientists were concerned about the security implications. Berg et al. approahed the National Academy of Sciences, which is a paragovernmental org, and it's funded by Congress, but it's not part of the beauracracy. They approached the NAS, and they said they were concerned. They anticipated public concerns. And in doing so, they garnered the confidence of the public and the government which enables the self-regulation of recombinant DNA. The recombinant DNA advisory committee is run by NAS. There are other institutional regulatory committees which are usually based on colleagues.

It's easy for us to overlook the significance of this. Recombinant DNA is.. but then, it wasn't available at that time. This was practicioner driven. This was a group of scientists that expressed the concerns of the government and public. It was proactive, not reactive, which was unusual for a regulator or potential regulation group. In my opinion, this was significant because it precluded an open access debate. The actions of Berg and his collegaues in the development of a self-regulation regime for recombinant DNA technology, precluded our need to classifing recombinant DNA research. We didn't have to redact research. We took a proactive approach, and so it's not classified research.

I was sitting here this morning, I haven't met any of you, I'm going to go out on a limb and suggest that this community has some opportunities that I see, sitting in Washington DC that I want to sort of share. I really do think that this community could set an example as a group of responsible practicioners like Berg and his colleagues. They were considered proactive and they sort of shaped what they considered federal policy in the US. That's nothing to sneeze at.

In keeping with my international scope, I think that this community could set an international example and say that it could help other nations to view citizen scientists as assets, as motivators of innovation and prosperity. Thank you for your attention.