We encourage you to republish this article online and in print, it’s free under our creative commons attribution license, but please follow some simple guidelines:
  1. You have to credit our authors.
  2. You have to credit SciDev.Net — where possible include our logo with a link back to the original article.
  3. You can simply run the first few lines of the article and then add: “Read the full article on SciDev.Net” containing a link back to the original article.
  4. If you want to also take images published in this story you will need to confirm with the original source if you're licensed to use them.
  5. The easiest way to get the article on your site is to embed the code below.
For more information view our media page and republishing guidelines.

The full article is available here as HTML.

Press Ctrl-C to copy

If the current global campaign to eradicate polio succeeds, the virus will no longer be in circulation in a year's time. But this will also be the beginning of a highly risky final phase in eliminating the disease for good.

In this article, Leslie Roberts lays out the challenges that will face the campaign team once the disease is no longer being transmitted. The biggest threat is that the live virus used in the vaccine could itself create a pandemic. This will make it necessary both to collect virus stocks from laboratories and factories around the world, and stockpile enough of it to combat any future outbreaks.

The scale of these operations is only one difficulty ahead. Close international cooperation and coordination of control efforts will also be required — and this, say some, will be difficult to achieve in many of the world's poor and war-torn countries.

Link to full feature in Science

Reference: Science 303, 1969 (2004)

Related topics