California taxpayers have spent $135 million in recent years building state-of-the-art research facilities on four private campuses for stem cell research — an expense some critics have questioned in the face of California’s budget crisis.
A laboratory worker was found infected with Cow Pox from an exposure while working in an unsafe biotech laboratory in the United States. The worker was not working direclty with the virus but became infected because of a lack of biocontainment and decontamination issues. The laboratory worker became infected in July 2010. "The investigation revealed cowpox virus stocks in the laboratory's freezer but no known or intentional use of cowpox in the patient's laboratory in the previous 5 years," However, environmental swabbing indicated that virus was found on several surfaces in the laboratory and freezer room. Cowpox infections are transmissible.