“We need, of course, without any fears about your attitude”

“We need, of course, without any fears about your attitude”

On Monday, President Vladimir Putin expressed concern about the “gathering across the country of biological material” of Russians. At the meeting of the Council for human rights, he stressed that these activities are conducted “purposefully and professionally.” Interviewed by “b”, scientists have suggested that we are talking about the tender for the purchase of samples of Russians, which in the summer announced the command of the U.S. air force, and explained why the creation of genetic weapons, acting selectively against the Russians, impossible.

Asked during a meeting of the HRC on Monday, the Director of the Russian public Institute of electoral law Igor Borisov to the remark about live streaming of voting in the elections, which foreigners can use to collect “images” of the voting citizens, Vladimir Putin, addressed the issue of security of Russian citizens.

“Images-that is fine. You know that biological material collected for the whole country? Moreover, different ethnic groups and people living in different geographical points of Russia. Here’s the question: why are you doing this? Do purposefully and professionally. We have such a very great interest”, — the President said and continued: “We need, of course, without any fears to treat this. They should do what they want, and we will do what we must”

Interviewed by “Kommersant” the Russian scientists were unable to recall examples of the “collection of biological material of different ethnic groups” in Russia. However, in the summer of 2017, the U.S. air force really has announced a tender for the purchase of 12 samples of “normal ribonucleic acid” (RNA) and 27 “normal fresh frozen synovial membranes of man” (lines the surface of the joint cavity and ligaments located in the joint — “Kommersant”). In terms of the tender it was stated that donors should be “Russian/European origin.” All samples should come from different donors and “must be assembled in Russia and belong to the Caucasians”. “The government will not consider the samples from Ukraine”, — emphasized in the specification. “All samples shall be derived from healthy donors who have no disorders of the musculoskeletal apparatus. This should be confirmed by laboratory tests,” — said in the document. The application was archived on 11 August, information about who won the tender, not on the site. U.S. officials on this occasion had been made. This story was widely covered in the Russian media: there were suggestions that the way the US plans to develop a genetic weapon.

“This tender was really discussed in the summer. But let’s see what will remain, if we abandon conspiracy theories” — offers a doctor of biological Sciences Mikhail Gelfand. He reminds that the customers of the tender was necessary the samples, “about a couple dozen healthy Russian” and “judging by the fact that they need it frozen tissues and the genome is a sort of medical genetics. Then you can fantasize. For example, it is typical that when studies of new drugs collect genetic material from different ethnic groups. To the differences in response were associated with medicine and not with genetic history.” Mr. Gelfand added that research funding in the US differs from Russia: according to him, the fact that the customer is the military Department, does not mean that the results of the study will be used for military purposes.