Synthetic Biology Could Bring a Pox on Us All

David Ewing Duncan The Next Best Version of Me: How to Live Forever David Kushner A Deadly Hunt for Hidden Treasure Spawns an Online Mystery Megan Molteni A New Lab Is Brewing Microbes to Create Makeup and Medicines The existence of the vials raised another chilling possibility: Could smallpox make a comeback? If these samples were left behind, who knows how many others could remain. The US maintains enough of the smallpox vaccine to protect all 328 million Americans. But in the decades since the disease was eradicated, scientists have discovered that several groups of people—those with HIV, pregnant women, newborns, and cancer survivors among them—are at risk for complications from the vaccine, such as heart inflammation and brain infections. …