The British Pirbright Institute destroyed the largest batch of rinderpest specimens. The remaining small parties will be destroyed according to the approved schedule in order to completely eliminate this virus on our planet within a year. For this institution, this is the culmination of 70 years of work, but for WHO, it is just the beginning of a large program to completely physically destroy all living specimens of the viruses studied.
Humanity may grieve over the extinction of a Steller cow, mammoths or animals from the Red Data Book, but we must destroy such "living creatures" as pathogenic viruses and bacteria with our own hands. The last thing that stopped scientists was the risk of losing information about malware and dooming themselves to new problems when mutated strains appeared. Now this issue has been resolved by creating a detailed DNA map for each virus to be destroyed.
In 2011, rinderpest was officially defeated and destroyed on all continents, with only 40 samples left in laboratories in the world. On June 14, 2019, at the Pirbright Institute, as an institution with the highest level of protection, the largest batch of these samples was eliminated. The genome of the virus has been verified and preserved, data about it can be used in the future to create vaccines or for scientific purposes. But the virus itself will not be stored - now it is an unjustified risk.
Since 1950, more than 2500 samples of various viruses have been eliminated at the Pirbright Institute, for which resistance has long been developed and their further storage is impractical. It is noteworthy that it was here that at one time the scientist Walter Ploright created a vaccine against rinderpest. And now, when the disease has been defeated, its last pathogen will also be destroyed. The rest of the deadly viruses are next.