Plague mice on the lam in Jersey

Camus, Camus, wherever you are.

In an incident that could have been part of a lost chapter in "The Plague," Albert Camus' existentialist take on how people respond to a nasty bout of infectious disease, three plague-infected mice have gone missing from a bioterror research facility in Newark, N.J. Researchers lost track of the bubonic rodents more than two weeks ago, according to a report Friday in the Star-Ledger.

Don't panic just yet, however. Experts tell the newspaper that even if the mice did escape the Public Health Research Institute, the danger to the general populace is--probably--minimal. Still, the story points to broader concerns about what it depicts as a distressingly unregulated building boom in biological-warfare research centers across the country.

Tech Culture
About the author

Jonathan Skillings is managing editor of CNET News, based in the Boston bureau. He's been with CNET since 2000, after a decade in tech journalism at the IDG News Service, PC Week, and an AS/400 magazine. He's also been a soldier and a schoolteacher, and will always be a die-hard fan of jazz, the brassier the better.


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