WASHINGTON — Don’t look for testing of the anthrax vaccine to begin in children anytime soon.
Controversy arose last year as experts debated whether such studies should be done to learn how to treat children in case of a bioterror attack.
But a presidential commission says the government would have to take multiple steps, including more safety research in young adults, before it would be ethical to consider tests in children. “The safety of our children is paramount, and we have to get this precisely right,” said Dr. Amy Gutmann, who chairs the Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues, which released its report last month.
More than a decade after the anthrax attacks, the government has a multibillion-dollar stockpile of drugs and vaccines to fight an array of threats. There’s no information on whether those so-called countermeasures would work in children like they’re expected to help their parents, or even what dose to use.